Archive - October 2021

The Inside Story of the Peace Corps in China

The Inside Story of the Peace Corps in China

  By Daniel Schoolenberg (China 2013-15) SupChina Weekly September 30, 2021   When the Peace Corps pulled out of China early last year, it marked the end of a 27-year program that existed only thanks to the efforts of high-level American and Chinese diplomats. Could the program — with its ideals of U.S.-China cooperation — ever be restored?     On August 31, 1988, a small group of American officials arrived in Beijing for talks with Chinese officials. They were treated like high-level diplomats: received with the utmost formality, treated to endless banquets, given the same villa that had hosted Nixon and Kissinger years before to conduct meetings. Led by Jon Keeton, the regional director for the Peace Corps’s Asia programs, the small delegation was tasked with negotiating the details of a Peace Corps program in China. Keeton remembers the high ceilings, ornate pillars, the beautiful potted plants, and the . . .

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