Former U.S. Secretary of State Henry Kissinger, a pivotal figure in global diplomacy, passed away at the age of 100.
His death on Wednesday in his Connecticut home marks the end of an era in international relations.
Kissinger's career spanned several decades, influencing U.S. foreign policy significantly. His tenure under two presidents saw groundbreaking work, especially in relation to China and Russia.
His contributions were not just confined to his time in office. Even after leaving the formal political stage, Kissinger continued to advise and meet with current politicians and world leaders.
His last notable public appearance was in July 2022, during a meeting with Chinese President Xi Jinping in China. This was a testament to his longstanding relationship with the country, having visited China over 100 times during his career.
Chinese officials acknowledged Kissinger as instrumental in shaping early China-U.S. relations, highlighting his role in opening diplomatic channels between the two nations.
Following the announcement of his passing, a wave of condolences and tributes from global leaders emerged, reflecting the deep impact of Kissinger's work on international politics.
U.S. Secretary of State Antony Blinken praised Kissinger, saying, "Secretary Kissinger really set the standard for everyone involved in this job."
Former Secretary of State Mike Pompeo and former President George W. Bush also shared their respects, highlighting Kissinger's influential role in American history and global affairs.
During his tenure as Secretary of State, Kissinger played pivotal roles in various significant events. Notably, he orchestrated President Nixon's historic 1972 visit to China and negotiated a ceasefire in the Vietnam War.
These actions not only shaped the course of U.S. foreign policy but also had far-reaching implications on global political dynamics.
Kissinger's approach and strategies in diplomacy have been studied and admired by many, setting a benchmark in international relations.
Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu shared his thoughts, stating, "His legacy will continue to inspire and guide future generations of leaders and diplomats."
From a Chinese perspective, Foreign Ministry Spokesperson Wang Wenbin recognized Kissinger's commitment to Sino-US relations and his belief in their importance for global peace and prosperity.
Former President George W. Bush also shared his thoughts on the late diplomat:
"America has lost one of the most dependable and distinctive voices of Henry Kissinger. He worked in the Administrations of two Presidents and counseled many more."
Even in his later years, Kissinger's insights and advice were sought after by politicians and leaders worldwide. His engagements, up to as recently as 2022, underscored his continued relevance in the diplomatic sphere.
His unique perspective, born out of decades of experience and understanding of global politics, remained influential and respected across the political spectrum.
His death brings to a close a chapter in American diplomacy, leaving behind a legacy that will continue to be referenced and revered in the field of international relations.
Henry Kissinger's life, spanning a century, was marked by profound changes in global politics, many of which he played a direct role in shaping. From his early days in government to his later years as a statesman and advisor, his impact on U.S. foreign policy and international relations was undeniable.