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Lessons in Diplomacy


From Vanessa at Feministing:

In the midst of a trade discussion in 1973 with Secretary of State Henry Kissinger, Chinese leader Mao Zedong offered sending Chinese women to the United States as as a trade, saying:

“We don’t have much. What we have in excess is women. So if you want them we can give a few of those to you, some tens of thousands. . . We have too many women. … They give birth to children and our children are too many.”

And the kicker: “It is such a novel proposition,” Kissinger replied. “We will have to study it.”

Shades of Dr. Strangelove… Seriously, though, I’m not sure how Kissinger could have responded any differently; vicious misogyny was only one of the many horrible things that Kissinger chose to ignore about Mao Zedong. Any thoughts on a more appropriate reply that would have preserved the opportunity for Sino-American reapproachment?

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