At a Glance


Trace U.S.-China relations from the 60s through present day.

Jeffrey T. Richelson, ed., National Security Archive

China and the United States: From Hostility to Engagement, 1960-1998

Photo, Nixon and Mao, 1972

Presents 15 annotated U.S. government intelligence documents—most of which have been declassified through Freedom of Information Act requests—that illuminate various phases of the evolving U.S.-China relationship from the Cold War period to the recent past. These materials have been selected from a published microfiche collection of more than 2,000 documents. The site offers memoranda and directives on U.S. fears concerning China's weapons program; President Nixon's rapprochement in 1972; the changed U.S. policy regarding Taiwan; U.S. concerns over the sale by China to Saudi Arabia of intermediate-range ballistic missiles; human rights issues; and the resumption of a military relationship between the two powers after a falling out over Tiananmen Square. Includes a White House memo of the conversation held at the first meeting between Nixon and Chairman Mao Zedong, a message by President Ford to Mao on the day of Nixon's resignation, and two biographies of Chinese officials. Valuable for those studying U.S.-China relations and the role the U.S. intelligence community has played in that history.