Exploring Asia

Exploring Asia

Miller Center experts share their insights on relations between the United States and nations in the Asia Pacific


Nixon on China

President Richard Nixon would play China against the Soviet Union, the Soviet Union against China, and both against North Vietnam. He made an unprecedented and widely televised trip to Beijing in 1972 that caused a sensation among the American people, who had seen little of the world's most populous nation since the Communists had taken power

Eisenhower's portrait by Bacharach in 1952

Eisenhower on Korea

"In the simplest terms, what we are doing in Korea is this: We are trying to prevent a third world war."

—Speech by President Dwight D. Eisenhower on the Korean War, April 11, 1951

Deng Xiaoping and Jimmy Carter sign diplomatic agreements between the United States and China. January 1979

Carter and Deng Xiaoping

"The normalization of relations between the United States and China has no other purpose than this: the advancement of peace."

—Speech by President Carter on the establishment of diplomatic relations with China, December 15, 1978

President Reagan meets with Deng Xiaoping

Reagan and Deng Xioaping

"We all think that the generation that went before us didn't quite do things right. But be very careful. Don't throw away the basic values essential to civilization."

—President Reagan on a visit to Fudan University, April 30, 1984

Obama and Xi shake hands

Obama and Xi Jinping

"The relationship between the United States and China will shape the 21st century, which makes it as important as any bilateral relationship in the world."

—President Obama at the US/China Strategic and Economic Dialogue, July 27, 2009

Trump and Xi shake hands at the G20 summit

Trump and Xi Jinping

"As we pursue this bright future, we must hold accountable the nation which unleashed this plague onto the world: China. In the earliest days of the virus, China locked down travel domestically while allowing flights to leave China—and infect the world."

—President Trump addressing the 75th session of the United Nations, September 22, 2020