Fearing a military clash over Taiwan, the veteran diplomat urged Washington and Beijing to defuse tensions
Former U.S. Secretary of State Henry Kissinger warned in an interview released Thursday that the U.S. and China could be drawn into an open military confrontation if they continue with their current policies.
The former politician, widely considered the architect of the 1970s Sino-U.S. détente, was asked in an interview with Bloomberg whether he thought China would try to take back Taiwan in the near future.
While Kissinger did not offer a definitive answer, he warned “Based on the current trajectory of the relationship, I think there could be some military conflict.”
He claimed that Sino-US relations have reached “unique situation” Because both countries view each other with deep suspicion. “China’s biggest threat is the United States, and from its perspective, the same is true here [in the US]” Kissinger said.
“Wars, on the other hand, have become either unwinnable … or only winnable at a disproportionate cost,” The former diplomat added, warning that both countries must now take a step back “The top of the cliff.”
Kissinger insisted ‘Current relationship trajectory must be changed’ And noted that both sides are looking for signs of de-escalation.
However, he believes that whether the United States and China will be able to reduce tensions is debatable. “They haven’t really engaged in the kind of conversation I’m suggesting. But I think they’re moving in that direction,” He said.
The veteran diplomat was apparently referring to the upcoming visit to China by US Secretary of State Anthony Blinken.According to Washington, the parties intend to “Discuss the importance of keeping lines of communication open” and some issues of bilateral concern.
The landmark visit comes at a low point in relations between the two countries, with Taiwan one of the most divisive issues. China considers the self-governing island part of its sovereign territory and is angry at Taipei’s purchase of U.S. military equipment.
Senior Chinese officials have repeatedly said they would prefer peaceful reunification with Taiwan, but have not ruled out the use of force to achieve that goal.
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