The Lessons of Henry Kissinger
The legendary and controversial statesman criticizes the Obama Doctrine, talks about the main challenges for the next president, and explains how to avoid war with China.
Author’s note (November 10, 2016): Over the past several months, I’ve interviewed Henry Kissinger, the former secretary of state, numerous times on the subject of America’s role in the world. Our conversations took place before this week’s election, but were informed by the foreign-policy differences between the candidates. The December 2016 issue of The Atlantic includes my article on these conversations, which you will find published below. In addition, a full rendering of our several interviews, on subjects including the future of Russia, the rise of China, and the chaos of the Middle East, can be found here.
On Wednesday, the day the country, and the world, were just beginning to absorb the shock of Donald Trump’s victory, I spoke with Kissinger by telephone to get his postelection thoughts. He told me that he was expecting other nations, particularly the great powers, to enter a period of intense study, in order to understand how they should respond to a Trump presidency. He also said he expected the Islamic State, or other similarly minded jihadist organizations, to test Trump early by launching attacks, in order to provoke a reaction (or, he suggested, an overreaction).
“Nonstate groups may make the assessment that Trump will react to a terror attack in a way that suits their purposes,” Kissinger said.
Here is the transcript of our short conversation, followed by the full article.
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WNU Editor: In our family Henry Kissinger was never to be mentioned. I do not know why, but of all the diplomats that the U.S. has produced .... my father hated Henry Kissinger the most. As for my opinion .... I agree with some of the things that he has said and done .... and disagree with the rest (especially his views on globalism). But there is no denying one thing as this Atlantic Post reveals .... he is still very sharp at 93 years old.