As China's presumed leader-in-waiting, Xi Jinping has embarked on something of a charm offensive over the last 12 months, meeting world leaders around the globe. Unlike current President Hu Jintao, Xi seems more comfortable in his skin, and is often photographed grinning or glad-handing. But his real thoughts and views about the world are as much as a mystery as Hu's when he took office nearly 10 years ago. As businessmen, journalists, and observers the world over try to get a handle on Xi's policies and what his leadership will mean for a rising China, Xi has offered little more than anodyne public statements and a smile.
Above, Xi waves to Thai students during a visit to Chulalongkorn University in Bangkok on Dec. 24, 2011.