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Legendary U.S. Politician Henry Kissinger Passes Away

Hungary Today 2023.11.30.

Henry Kissinger, a legendary figure in American diplomacy and Secretary of State to Richard Nixon and Gerald Ford, died at his home in Connecticut on Wednesday at the age of 100, reported hirado.hu.

Henry Kissinger, who initiated the rapprochement with Moscow and Beijing in the 1970s, saw his image overshadowed by the darker aspects of American history, such as his support for the 1973 coup in Chile, the invasion of East Timor in 1975 and, of course, the Vietnam War. It is his ‘realpolitik’, his cold calculation of the national interests protected by the powers that be, that has made him a well-known figure worldwide.

With his passing, “America has lost one of the most respected and silenced voices in foreign policy”, said former US President George W. Bush.

Henry Kissinger (2016). Photo: Hungary Today

Kissinger celebrated his 100th birthday in May, and remained in the spotlight of world leaders decades after he retired from active politics. In July this year he visited Beijing, where he held talks with Chinese President Xi Jinping, who hailed him as a “legendary diplomat”. China occupies a special place in Mr Kissinger’s career. He played a key role in normalizing relations between the United States and Mao Tse-tung China when he traveled secretly to Beijing to organize Richard Nixon’s historic visit in 1972.

Henry Kissinger (2016). Photo: Hungary Today

Kissinger also led the secret negotiations to end the Vietnam War. He and his Vietnamese counterpart Le Duc Tho were awarded the Nobel Peace Prize in 1973 for their part in silencing the weapons in the Vietnam War. However, Le Duc Tho refused the prize, claiming that the negotiated ceasefire had not been respected, and Kissinger did not travel to the Norwegian capital for the award ceremony for fear of protests.

Henry Kissinger is also recognized in the United States for his role as a mediator between Israel and the Arab world. In 1973, after Arab countries unexpectedly attacked Israel during the Jewish holiday of Yom Kippur, he organized a massive airlift of weapons for the Israeli ally.

The former US Secretary of State, Heinz Alfred Kissinger, was born in Bavaria in 1923 into a German Jewish family, fled Nazi Germany and became a naturalized US citizen at the age of 20. He joined military counterintelligence and the US Army and later studied at Harvard, where he later taught.

He became the face of world diplomacy when Republican Richard Nixon invited him to the White House in 1969 as national security adviser and then secretary of state, and he held both posts from 1973 to 1975. He remained head of diplomacy under Nixon’s successor, Gerald Ford, until 1977.

Hungarian President Katalin Novák remembered the former US politician in a social media post saying

He was one of those who shaped international politics and so, history, in the second half of the 20th century. A great life, a great legacy. His call to end the war in Ukraine through a peace deal crafted in negotiations remains pertinent even today. Rest in peace


Fidesz MEP Balázs Hidvéghi also paid tribute to the late U.S. politician writing that

Henry Kissinger, former US Secretary of State, one of the most important figures of the Cold War era and the most respected intellectual of US foreign policy in the world, has died at the age of 100. God rest his soul!”


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Via hirado.hu; Featured Image: Hungary Today

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