Nixon Plays the China Card

Nixon Plays the China CardNixon Plays the China Card


Realizing that normalization of relations with China was key for US withdrawal from South Vietnam, Nixon sought a summit between himself and Mao. Nixon dispatched Henry Kissinger to secret talks with the PRC’s foreign minister Chou En-lai to lay the groundwork for the visit. Capitalizing on deteriorating Sino-Soviet relations, Nixon scored perhaps the greatest diplomatic coup of the Cold War. The Shanghai Communique that followed the summit danced around several fundamental disagreements between the two countries, including Taiwan and Vietnam. However, it was clear that the Soviet Union could no longer depend upon Chinese support in regional conflicts. While Nixon expressed his desire to fully normalize relations between the two countries quickly, Watergate interrupted these plans. It would fall to Jimmy Carter to restore full diplomatic relations between the two countries.

Time: Mid War
Side: US
Ops: 2
Removed after event: Yes


An annoying China Card event with a choose-your-poison dilemma.  The best solution to this dilemma is to ignore it altogether by sending Nixon to space; if forced to play it, I would usually rather fork over 2 VPs than the China Card, but of course this may depend on the state of the scoring track.


A good event.  2 Ops for 2 VPs is a strong trade, particularly towards the end of the Mid War, and the China Card itself is worth at least 2 VPs (because possession at the end of the game gives +1 VP for you rather than your opponent).  The main drawback is that you only get the China Card facedown, thus depriving you of an Action Round of Ops, but if you have an AR to spare, it is worth playing.

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