China 'swayed Kissinger with Peking duck'

Dublin Core


China 'swayed Kissinger with Peking duck'


Nixon, Chinese--Food, Peking, CIA., Cold War


Opinion based newspaper article commenting on Chinese negotiation behavior, with particular reference to Nixon's visit to China.


Rhodes, Tom


The Times Digital Archive


The Times










GALE|IF0500669465 [Gale document number]


United States

Text Item Type Metadata


China'swayed Kissinger with Peking duck'
A NEWLY released CIA re - port detailing the history of Sino-American relations dur - ing the Cold War reveals that China manipulated the cream of United States foreign policy makers from the Nixon through to the Reagan years. The document, written by the Rand Corporation on be - half of the intelligence com - mun ity , is filled with detailed examples of how Peking han - dled senior American officials from Henry Kissinger to Zbig - niew Brzezinski and George Bush. The Chinese, wishing to advance their interests in places such as Indo-China and Taiwan, used variotis, tactics of persuasion- on? " visiting Americans, from holding opu -
lent banquets to playing at presi - dential politics. From the earliest days of the initia - tives by the late President Nixon and Dr Kissin - ger , the study maintains, the Chinese tried to exploit individual insecur ities and play off presi - dents against their domestic ri - va ls . During the famous 1972 visit by President Nix - on , for example, Dr Kissinger ne - gotiated the
"Shanghai communique", an American acknowledgement that Taiwan was part of China, "late at night after a banquet of Peking duck and powerful mao tqi liquor". The report says that Dr Kissinger reportedly told his hosts: "After a dinner of Peking duck I'll sign anything." Through - out Nixon's overtures to Chi - na , then Prime Minister Chou En-lai and other leaders re -
peatedly played on the Presi - dent 's fear that the historic first steps might be made by his opposition Democratic leaders. Nixon immediately instructed Dr Kissinger to tell the Chinese leader that he "wants no political visitors before his trip". The study says that China complied with this request because Chou and Chairman Mao Tse-tung believed that it would contribute- to Nixon's re-election and would leave him in their debt. The Chinese constantly tried to set fellow politicians against each other. In 1975, they invited President Nixon to China to bring pressure on President Ford for normalisation. When Presir
dent Reagan took office they fa - voure d Alexan - der Haig; the Secretary of State, over Rich - ard Allen, the President's Nat - ional Security Adviser. From Nixon's first moves, the two countries went to great lengths to co-operate ag - ainst the Soviet threat, pooling their intelligence gathering. In February, 1972, Dr Kissinger, then National
Security Adviser, briefed Chi - na on Russian troop deploy - ments , according to the report released to the Los Angeles Times after a Freedom of Information lawsuit. The report concludes that "the most distinctive charac - teristic of Chinese negotiating behaviour is an effort to develop and manipulate strong interpersonal relation - ships with foreign officials".
From Tom Rhodes in Washington
Kissinger feted

Original Format



Rhodes, Tom, “China 'swayed Kissinger with Peking duck',” Intro to Digital Humanities Fall 2018, accessed July 25, 2021,

Output Formats