Friends With (few) Benefits

In a blog post for Foreign Policy last week, David Wertime and James Palmer delved into the different layers of friendship when it comes to dealing with China. To summarize: If you’re a Chinese businessman or official and you call David or James an “Old Friend,” you might as well pack up whatever it is you’re selling because they’re not buying it.

It’s an old strategy, one that has been perfected over the years. But there was a time when the “old friend” routine was still a work in progress.