Don't expect Trump to keep all voter promises: Kissinger

WASHINGTON • United States political elder statesman Henry Kissinger advises against expecting President-elect Donald Trump to give his voters exactly what he promised.

"One should not insist on nailing Mr Trump into positions that he had taken in the campaign," Dr Kissinger said on CNN show Fareed Zakaria GPS on Sunday.

The former secretary of state met Mr Trump at his transition headquarters in Trump Tower, New York, last Thursday and, according to a statement from the President-elect's team, held a conversation focused on Russia, China, Iran and the European Union.

"President-elect Trump and Dr Kissinger have known each other for years and had a great meeting," said the Trump team statement.

Dr Kissinger has disagreed with Trump policies in the past, urging him last December not to put into practice a proposal to ban Muslims from entering the US.

In September, he was quoted considering an endorsement of Democratic candidate Hillary Clinton.

But now he suggests giving the incoming president room to move.

Referring to Mr Trump's campaign promises, Dr Kissinger told CNN: "If he insists on them, then of course disagreements will become expressed.

"I think we should give him an opportunity to develop the positive objectives that he may have and to discuss those."

He added: "We've gone through too many decades of tearing incumbent administrations apart. And it may happen again, but it shouldn't begin that way."

Dr Kissinger told host Fareed Zakaria that Mr Trump enters the White House in the unusual position of not being obligated to any particular group.

"This President-elect is the most unique that I have experienced in one respect: no baggage."

A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Straits Times on November 22, 2016, with the headline 'Don't expect Trump to keep all voter promises: Kissinger'. Print Edition | Subscribe