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“If the people believe there’s an imaginary river out there, you don’t tell them there’s no river there. You build an imaginary bridge over the imaginary river.” Nikita Khrushchev to Richard Nixon

 

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Nikita Sergeyevich Khrushchev (15 April 1894 – 11 September 1971) led the Soviet Union during part of the Cold War. He served as First Secretary of the Communist Party of the Soviet Union from 1953 to 1964, and as Chairman of the Council of Ministers, or Premier, from 1958 to 1964. Khrushchev was responsible for the de-Stalinization of the Soviet Union, for backing the progress of the early Soviet space program, and for several relatively liberal reforms in areas of domestic policy. Khrushchev’s party colleagues removed him from power in 1964, replacing him with Leonid Brezhnev as First Secretary and Alexei Kosygin as Premier.

Richard Milhous Nixon (January 9, 1913 – April 22, 1994) served as the 37th President of the United States from 1969 until 1974, when he became the only U.S. president to resign from office. Nixon ended American involvement in the war in Vietnam in 1973 and brought the American POWs home, and ended the military draft. Nixon’s visit to the People’s Republic of China in 1972 opened diplomatic relations between the two nations. The year 1973 saw a continuing series of revelations about the Watergate scandal and on August 9, 1974, he resigned in the face of almost certain impeachment and removal from office.