Published: October 18, 2010
This marks the first in a series of Pinnacle Conversations, the intent of which are to provide state-of-the-art information on critically important issues facing the world today, in technology and economics.
This first conversation is with Sidney Rittenberg, author of The Man Who Stayed Behind, founder of Rittenberg Associates, a personal friend to every Chinese leader from Mao to Hu Jintao, and arguably the world’s most informed (non-Chinese) expert on China. Sidney and his family share residences and offices in Beijing and the U.S., and his firm has helped U.S. corporations, including Microsoft, develop business in China. Sidney’s driving motivation in life appears to be the vision that China and the U.S. must become and remain long-term friends, and that anything which contributes to this is good. His 16 years of solitary confinement in Chinese prisons, courtesy of ex-friend Mao, led to his resignation from the Communist Party in the late ’70s, and perhaps sharpened a clarity in his love for the people of China, and his view of its institutions.