James Lilley was the U.S. ambassador to the People’s Republic of China from 1989 to 1991. Lilley served for twenty-five years in the CIA in Laos, Tokyo, Hong Kong, and Taiwan before moving to the State Department in the early 1980s to begin a distinguished career as the U.S.’s top-ranking diplomat in Taiwan, ambassador to South Korea, and finally, ambassador to China.
From helping Laotian insurgent forces assist the American efforts in Vietnam to his posting in Beijing during the Tiananmen Square crackdown, he was in a remarkable number of crucial places during challenging times as he spent his life tending to America’s interests in Asia. He is the author of ?China Hands?, in which he includes three generations of stories from an American family in the Far East.
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