[…] The American effort to thwart that project, initiated by Barack Obama and maintained by Donald Trump, was a misguided and short-sighted policy that was destined to fail. And it did fail when Biden simply recognized the reality that the pipeline, nearing completion, couldn’t be stopped. So the president put the best face on it and accepted defeat. […]
What this tells us, beyond the suggestion that perhaps America should butt out of such matters, is that it should also perhaps give further thought to its own anti-Russia obsession and seek prospects for finding common ground with that regional power on matters worthy of exploration.
Which calls to mind President Richard Nixon’s famous outreach, in the early 1970s, to the country that he previously had referred to derisively as “Red China.” Nixon, the anticommunist partisan, gave the country a stunning example of new thinking and new flexibility in policymaking on the international scene. China and America viewed each other as implacable enemies. Nixon set out to change that. And he succeeded. […]
Before traveling to China, Nixon pulled out one of his famous yellow legal pads and labeled three columns at the top: “What They Want”; “What We Want”; and “What We Both Want.” Then he filled in the columns with thumbnail descriptions that fit those categories. This clarified that Nixon had no intention of bringing to this epic negotiation the kind of foreign policy arrogance that America projects these days. He genuinely wanted to pursue China’s fundamental interests, to the extent that he could, because he knew that if he didn’t the trip wouldn’t have much point.
He also knew that the one thing Chinese leaders wanted above everything else was a U.S. recognition that Taiwan belonged to China. So he gave it to them. “Principle one,” said Nixon, “there is one China, and Taiwan is part of China. There will be no more statements made—if I can control our bureaucracy—to the effect that the status of Taiwan is undetermined.”
This was astonishing. He added that America wouldn’t support any Taiwanese independence movement, that the United States would support any peaceful resolution of the Taiwan issue, and it would draw down on U.S. forces on the island as the situation in Vietnam allowed. Läs artikel