From left to right: Henry Kissinger, Zhou Enlai, Mao Zedong. [File photo]
Henry Alfred Kissinger, born in 1923, is a German-born American political scientist, diplomat, and recipient of the Nobel Peace Prize.
He served as National Security Advisor and later concurrently as Secretary of State in the administrations of Presidents Richard Nixon and Gerald Ford. After his term, his opinion was still sought by many following presidents and many world leaders.
Kissinger played a dominant role in United States foreign policy between 1969 and 1977. During this period, he orchestrated the opening of relations with the People's Republic of China.
As National Security Advisor under Nixon, Kissinger made two trips to China in July and October, 1971 (the first of which was made in secret) to confer with Premier Zhou Enlai, then in charge of Chinese foreign policy. This paved the way for the groundbreaking 1972 summit between Nixon, Zhou Enlai, and Communist Party of China Chairman Mao Zedong, as well as the formalization of relations between the two countries, ending 23 years of diplomatic isolation and mutual hostility.
(Courtesy of Wikipedia)