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[访谈录] 【整理】2008-07-09&07-11 老美眼中的“乒乓外交”

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With a world about to descend on Beijing for the Olympic Games, it may be difficult for some younger people to imagine that Communist China was once largely cut off from the Western World. Then, at the height of the cold war, that began to change in a most remarkable way. John Larson has the story tonight of a diplomatic breakthrough Ping Pong style.


/ The Chinese economic miracle, the Beijing Olympics may have never happened without the help of a little, white ball. Liang Geliang from China and George Braithwaite of the U. S. played an exhibition match at the Nixon Library this month. Both were members of their countries' Ping Pong teams 37 years ago which arguably changed history.

 

In 1971, America feared the largely unknown communist giant (Communist China seeks to spread its own brand of global revolution). But that's when a long-haired American Ping Pong player missed his team bus in Japan and befriended the world's NO. 1 Chinese player. NBC correspondent John Rich watched as the unlikely friendship became international news and the American team was invited to be the first Americans inside the mysterious China in 20 years. (A remarkable display of warmth and good will. ) "Well, I ve never landed on the moon but it was a little bit like that." The American athletes were welcomed by the Chinese premier himself. Crowds of 18 thousand turned out to watch exhibition matches, in which it can now be said the Chinese let the Americans win.

 

"Do you think the Chinese guy went easy on you because you were an American visitor?" "I, I would say YES. " "You think so?" " I think so! "

 

All of which stunned the Nixon's White House, "It was a pretty clear signal that the Chinese were looking for a fundamental change in their relationship."  White House tapes reveal Nixon recognized the matches were a diplomatic breakthrough. "We want to get everything that we can out of this... That we not appear to exploit it." Within days, the ground walk was laid for Nixon's historic trip to China which soon opened China, all its exotic wonders to the world. But perhaps the Chinese leaders set it even better; in essence, they had let the little ball move the big ball. John Larson, NBC News, Los Angles.

 

By the way, China won that rematch; you can see more from NBC's first trip to China back in 1971 with correspondent John Rich on our website: nightly. MSNBC. com.
 

[ 本帖最后由 greatsea 于 2008-7-10 14:35 编辑 ]
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