🙏 Henry Kissinger, dominant US diplomat of Cold War era, dies aged 100

WASHINGTON (Reuters) – Henry Kissinger, the most powerful U.S. diplomat of the Cold War era, who helped Washington open up to China, forge arms control deals with the Soviet Union and end the Vietnam War, but who was reviled by critics over human rights, has died aged 100.

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By Steve Holland and Arshad Mohammed
November 30, 20235:26 PM CSTUpdated 5 min ago
Kissinger, a German-born Jewish refugee whose career took him from academia to diplomacy and who remained an active voice in foreign policy into his later years, died at his home in Connecticut on Wednesday, his geopolitical consulting firm, Kissinger Associates
Kissinger was at the height of his powers during the 1970s in the middle of the Cold War when he served as national security adviser and secretary of state under Republican President Richard Nixon.
After Nixon’s resignation in 1974 amid the Watergate scandal, he remained a diplomatic force as secretary of state under Nixon’s successor, President Gerald Ford.
Kissinger was the architect of the U.S. diplomatic opening with China, landmark U.S.-Soviet arms control talks, expanded ties between Israel and its Arab neighbors, and the Paris Peace Accords with North Vietnam.
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While many hailed Kissinger for his brilliance and statesmanship, others branded him a war criminal for his support for anti-communist dictatorships, especially in Latin America. In his latter years, his travels were circumscribed by efforts by some countries to arrest or question him about past U.S. foreign policy.
Democratic U.S. President Joe Biden waited nearly 24 hours after the announcement of Kissinger’s death to issue a statement saying that they often strongly disagreed, but Kissinger’s “fierce intellect and profound strategic focus was evident.”
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Earlier, Biden’s national security spokesperson John Kirby said of Kissinger, “whether you saw eye-to-eye with him on every issue, there’s no question that he shaped foreign policy decisions for decades, and he certainly had an impact on America’s role in the world.”
Kissinger won the 1973 Nobel Peace Prize for ending U.S. involvement in the Vietnam War, but it was one of the most controversial ever. Two Nobel committee members resigned over the selection as questions arose about the secret U.S. bombing of Cambodia. North Vietnamese diplomat Le Duc Tho, selected to share the award, declined it.
As tributes poured in from around the world, Beijing called him a “good old friend of the Chinese people” who made historic contributions to normalizing relations between the two countries.
Russian President Vladimir Putin praised Kissinger as a “wise and farsighted statesman” while Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu said his meetings with Kissinger provided “a master class in statesmanship.”
Bangladeshi Foreign Minister Abdul Momen, however, recalled Kissinger’s role in the bloody 1971 war between West and East Pakistan that led eventually to East Pakistan becoming an independent Bangladesh.
“Henry Kissinger has been an iconic diplomat … but unfortunately, in 1971, he was dead against the people of the then-East Pakistan,” Momen told WION news. “That is very sad for such a smart man to do such inhumane things … He should have apologized to the people of Bangladesh for what he has done.”
With his distinctive German-accented voice, Kissinger was never shy to offer his opinion. Ford called him a “super secretary of state” but also noted his prickliness and self-assurance, saying, “Henry in his mind never made a mistake.”
“He had the thinnest skin of any public figure I ever knew,” Ford told an interviewer shortly before his death in 2006.
A memorial service will take place in New York, and Kissinger will be buried in Arlington National Cemetery just outside Washington, said a source familiar with the arrangements.

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