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Digital Archive International History Declassified

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Sino-American Cooperation, 1972-1989

Following Nixon's visit to China in 1972 and until the tumultuous events of 1989, China and the United States engaged in a dialogue on, and cooperated in resolving, a range of global issues and problems. For other Digital Archive collections on US-China relations, see Sino-American Confrontation, 1949-1971, and Sino-US Ambassadorial Talks, 1955-1970. (Image: Deng Xiaoping and Jimmy Carter in Washington, DC, January 1979. National Archives.)

  • October 21, 1975

    Memorandum of Conversation between Mao Zedong and Henry A. Kissinger

    U.S. Secretary of State Henry Kissinger met Chairman Mao at his residence in Peking. The two argued about the importance of U.S.-Chinese relations in American politics. Mao repeats that the United States' concerns order America, the Soviet Union, Europe, Japan, and lastly China. Kissinger responds that the Soviet Union, as a superpower, is frequently dealt with, but in strategy China is a priority. Throughout the conversation, Mao continues to point out his old age and failing health. The leaders also discuss European unity, Japanese hegemony, German reunification, and the New York Times.

  • December 02, 1975

    Memorandum of Conversation between Mao Zedong and Gerald R. Ford

    President Ford and Secretary Kissinger met with Chairman Mao and spoke about Chinese-U.S. relations, Japanese-U.S. relations, Chinese foreign relations with Japan and Western countries, NATO, the Sinai Agreement, and Soviet attempts to expand influence in Africa.

  • April 15, 1976

    Embassy of the GDR in the USSR, 'Note about a Meeting of Comrade Goede with Comrade Kapitsa, Head of the 1st Far Eastern Department of the MID on 14 April 1976'

    Goede and Kapitsa discuss the dismissal of Deng Xiaoping and recent appointment of Hua Guofeng following anti-Mao demonstrations. They also discuss Soviet relations with Cambodia and the DRV, and Sino-Japanese and Sino-American relations.

  • June 08, 1978

    Speech by L.I. Brezhnev to CPSU CC Politburo, 08 June 1978

    Concerns US-Soviet relations, including involvement in Africa, NATO, China, and SALT.

  • August 30, 1978

    Evaluation by the Central Committee of the Communist Party of the Soviet Union of the Normalization of US-Chinese Relations

    In this evaluation of Chinese-US rapprochement, elaborated by the Central Committee (CC) of the Communist Party of the Soviet Union (CPSU), Moscow states that Beijing is going to great lengths to demonstrate its willingness to cooperate closely with Washington, including through the creation of a global strategic alliance between China and the US against the Soviet Union and the entire Socialist community. Moscow urges its Eastern European allies to make use of all political and ideological means available to fight against the creation of a unified front between China and the US.

  • August 31, 1978

    Record of Conversation with H.E. Mr. William H. Gleysteen, Jr.

    Ambassadors Gleysteen and Miller discuss relations between North Korea and South Korea and the regional situation in Northeast Asia in 1978.

  • January 13, 1979

    Minutes of Conversation, Todor Zhivkov – Leonid Brezhnev

    Leonid Ilyich analyzes the establishment of US-Chinese diplomatic relations and recent developments in Iran and the Middle East. Todor Zhivkov talks about Bulgaria’s economic development and the Soviet cancellation of Bulgarian debt.

  • February 07, 1979

    General Meeting of Prime Minister and Vice Premier Deng (Summary Record)

    Deng and Ohira discuss China and Japan's relations with Pakistan, Vietnam, Cambodia, and the U.S.

  • February 07, 1979

    Meeting of Former Prime Minister Tanaka and Vice Premier Deng (Summary Record)

    Deng and Tanaka discuss Korea, Vietnam, Cambodia, and ASEAN, among other subjects.

  • February 07, 1979

    Tête-à-tête Meeting of Prime Minister and Vice Premier Deng (Record)

    Deng and Ohira discuss developments in Indochina and on the Korean Peninsula, as well as relations with the United States.

  • February 09, 1979

    Mongolian Record of Conversation with Soviet Officials in Moscow, February 1979

    Discusses the cancellation of the alliance treaty between China and the Soviet Union, and the impact this will have on the Mongolian People’s Republic. They are urged not to hurry the cancellation of the treaty, however, because China has not yet explicitly asked for it. They also note that there are anti-Soviet propaganda items being spread in Korea, and the growing role the U.S. is playing in Chinese affairs.

  • May 01, 1979

    Notes on a Meeting held during the Secretary-General's Visit to Peking, 1 May 1979

    Deng Xiaoping criticizes Vietnam as a regional hegemon in his a meeting with Secretary-General Kurt Waldheim.

  • 1980

    CC CPSU Information on Chinese Foreign Policy Issues

    Discusses the joint efforts by Chinese and American leaders to promote a better relationship between these two countries, at the expense of the Soviet Union and of communism. The U.S. seems to be trying to capitalize on a growing “internal stability” in China, and the U.S. is even now selling equipment to China. The Soviet Union does not believe that this alliance will prove powerful enough to significantly impair other Socialist countries, but their alliance should also not be ignored.

  • February, 1980

    Polish Record of Soviet alliance Meeting in Moscow, February 1980

    Discusses the growing aggression seen in China and the effects of its closer relationship with the United States.

  • February 01, 1980

    CPSU CC Politburo Decision

  • March 04, 1980

    CPSU CC Directive to Soviet Ambassadors in Communist Countries, Instructions 'About the China Question'

    Instructions to Soviet ambassadors on dealing with China's outreach to socialist countries in the eastern bloc, outlining a series of steps for Soviet ambassadors to follow which would foster skepticism about China’s intentions and thwart efforts by Chinese representatives to make wide-ranging contacts in these states. The directive notes China’s hostility to Vietnam, Cuba, Laos, and Mongolia and contrasts this with its development of extensive relations with Romania, Yugoslavia, and North Korea.

  • June, 1980

    East German Report on the Eleventh Interkit Meeting in Poland, June 1980

    Report from the East German representatives on the 11th Interkit meeting held in Poland. This was the first meeting attended by the Vietnamese.

  • October 02, 1980

    CPSU CC Politburo Directive to Soviet Ambassadors and Representatives, 'Carrying Out Additional Measures to Counter American-Chinese Military Cooperation'

    Instructions to Soviet ambassadors discussing the growing military cooperation between China and the United States.

  • June 09, 1982

    Conversation between Soviet Foreign Ministry Official Mikhail S. Kapitsa and Deputy Foreign Minister of Mongolia D. Yondon

    Record of conversation between Mikhail S. Kapitsa, the head of the First Far Eastern Department of the Soviet Foreign Ministry, and D. Yondon, First Deputy Foreign Minister of the Mongolian People's Republic. They discuss foreign relations with China, Japan and North Korea. They also discuss the current situation in Vietnam, India and Pakistan, and Afghanistan.

  • October 09, 1982

    Record of Prime Minister Suzuki’s Visit to China and Meetings

    Japan's Prime Minister meets with Deng Xiaoping, Hu Yaobang, and Zhao Ziyang for a series of meetings. The two sides discuss bilateral political and economic relations, developments in China's economic policies, Sino-Soviet and Sino-American relations, the situation on the Korean peninsula, the status of Hong Kong and Taiwan, the Israeli invasion of Lebanon, the Japanese textbook issue, and ther topics.