Former US Secretary of State Henry Kissinger Passes Away; Shashi Tharoor Reflects on His Transformation and US-India Relations

From Tilt to Ties: Kissinger's Shifting Stance on US-India Relations
Shashi Tharoor
Shashi Tharoor
Henry Kissinger
Henry Kissinger

New Delhi | As former US secretary of state Henry Kissinger passed away, Congress leader Shashi Tharoor on Thursday recalled how the ex-American diplomat had morphed into the most prominent advocate of closer US-India relations three decades after being the architect of the US tilt towards Pakistan in 1971.

Tharoor also said it helps to live long enough so that people don't remember ones earlier statements and actions.

Kissinger, known for his disdain for India's leadership in the 1970s, died at the age of 100, but the well-known American statesman and former secretary of state had been advocating stronger US-India ties for the last one decade under Prime Minister Narendra Modi.

In a post on X, Tharoor said, "The end of, by any definition, an extraordinary life. Henry Kissinger was indeed both a pivotal and a polarising figure. He also cited a BBC obituary of Kissinger.

"For a few years in New York, I knew him well enough to be on first-name terms with him. I was still amazed how 'Henry', the architect of the US tilt towards Pakistan in 1971, could morph with such insouciance into the most prominent advocate of closer US-India relations three decades later," the former minister of state for external affairs said.

"It helps to live long enough so people don't remember your earlier statements and actions!" Tharoor said.

Considered the architect of the US-China relationship since the early 70s, Kissinger died at his home in Connecticut on Wednesday.

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