When Nixon Met Mao

Richard M. Nixon, the disgraced, personality-challenged 37th President of the United States, was not famous for introspection. But in 1993 he reflected: "I will be known historically for two things. Watergate and the opening to China."

Watergate has been supplanted by Monicagate and other Washington scandals, but the relationship between China and the U.S. is still big news. Given today's trade and diplomatic ties between these two giants, it is worth recalling that just 35 years ago American policy held that "China" was the small island called Taiwan, and that Washington regarded the mainland as a hostile, totalitarian...

Want the full story?

Subscribe Now


Get TIME the way you want it

  • One Week Digital Pass — $4.99
  • Monthly Pay-As-You-Go DIGITAL ACCESS$2.99
  • One Year ALL ACCESSJust $30!   Best Deal!
    Print Magazine + Digital Edition + Subscriber-only Content on TIME.com

Learn more about the benefits of being a TIME subscriber

If you are already a subscriber sign up — registration is free!