Henry Alfred Kissinger (27 May 1923), born Heinz Alfred Kissinger, is an American statesman, political scientist, diplomat and geopolitical consultant who served as United States Secretary of State (1973-1977) and National Security Advisor (1969-1975) under the presidential administrations of Richard Nixon and Gerald Ford. During his tenure as National Security Advisor, Kissinger pioneered the policy of détente with the Soviet Union and orchestrated the opening of relations with the People’s Republic of China. For his actions negotiating a ceasefire in Vietnam, Kissinger received the 1973 Nobel Peace Prize under controversial circumstances, with two members of the committee resigning in protest. Some journalists, political activists and human rights lawyers condemned Kissinger as a war criminal. Kissinger later sought, unsuccessfully, to return the prize after the ceasefire failed.