EDITORIAL: Reasonable route with China
Published: Sunday, January 23, 2011
THE state visit to Washington of Chinese President Hu Jintao was all of the spectacle that formal state visits are supposed to be.
The White House pulled all of the protocol levers and pushed all of the etiquette buttons necessary to produce a made-for-television extravaganza appropriate to a meeting of the leaders of two powerful nations.
You had your vice presidential, red carpet welcoming of the Chinese president’s plane.
You had your president-to-president welcome at the White House.
You had your private conclave between Hu and President Barack Obama.
You had your black-tie state dinner, with no one so rude as to point out that Hu wore neither a tux nor a black tie. (He wore a suit. The tie was blue.)
And you had the joint press conference, the two presidents standing at separate lecterns, alternately taking questions and awaiting the translation of one another’s remarks.
It was quite a show. But gone are the days when Richard Nixon and Mao Zedong could claim an accomplishment simply by toasting each other in China.
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