China Advice from a Former President

As Deng Xiaoping makes room for Jiang Zemin, Richard Nixon reflects on his visit to China and argues why it is time for Washington to improve relations with Beijing

In the past decade, Deng Xiaoping shed so many of his titles that Westerners came to refer to him simply as China's leader. Last week he retired from his final official party post -- the chairmanship of the Central Military Commission, the party organ that oversees the armed forces and thus guaranteed him supreme power over the People's Republic. Deng's retirement, announced at the end of a secretive four-day party plenum that imposed a conservative agenda of economic retrenchment on the country, surprised Chinese and Westerners alike. Had Deng conceded political and economic momentum to the conservatives? Or was he merely...

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