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    The Origin of Ping-Pong Diplomacy

    By: Mayumi Itoh

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    "Japan Table Tennis Association President Gotåo Kåoji (1906-1972), the founder of Meiden High School, nurtured socially viable youth through sports education and used table tennis as a means of promoting international friendship and peace. All the expertise Gotåo accumulated through his lifework as an educator and civic leader was culminated in his decision to invite China to the World Table Tennis Championships in Nagoya in 1971. Notwithstanding the stalemate in the negotiations with Chinese officials on the terms of China's participation (China linked its participation to the "two Chinas" issue), Gotåo's convictions and principles earned Premier Zhou Enlai's respect and made China's participation possible. Were it not for Gotåo's initiative, President Richard Nixon would not have visited China in 1972. After four decades of obscurity, it is high time to set the record straight and give Gotåo overdue credit"--Provided by publisher.

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