Henry Kissinger: “We must not give in to Putin”

It is right to deliver heavy weapons to Kyiv, says Henry Kissinger, the grand old man of international crisis diplomacy. But the war over Ukraine must not become a war over Russia.

Henry Kissinger’s office is on Park Avenue near Central Park in Manhattan. The former foreign minister is available for the interview with the star arrived from his home in the state of Connecticut. He walks bent over, with a cane, an employee leads him into the corner room and there into his chair. Behind them on the windowsill framed photos of Kissinger with Angela Merkel, Barack Obama, Richard Nixon, George W. Bush, Mao Zedong. In the hallway a soccer ball from the Fürth game association and the new book by Norbert Röttgen.

Mr. Kissinger, you just turned 99. What is the secret of your longevity?
I was smart enough to choose my parents. Both turned almost 98.

Henry Kissinger was born in 1923 to a Jewish family in Fürth. In 1938 the family emigrated to the USA. Kissinger taught political science at Harvard. In 1969 President Richard Nixon appointed him National Security Advisor, from 1973 to 1977 he was US Secretary of State under Nixon and his successor Gerald Ford. Kissinger’s policy is highly controversial to this day. His greatest achievements include the policy of detente between the US and the Soviet Union, the establishment of diplomatic relations with China and his shuttle diplomacy during the Yom Kippur War in 1973. In the same year he received the Nobel Peace Prize for his efforts to end the Vietnam War. But critics also hold him responsible for the deaths of up to 150,000 civilians who fell victim to US carpet bombing in this war. His support for the coup general Pinochet in Chile also overshadows Kissinger’s legacy.

©Benedict Evans

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