From the Cold War to a New Era: The United States and the Soviet Union, 1983-1991

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9780801859229: From the Cold War to a New Era: The United States and the Soviet Union, 1983-1991

An updated edition of Don Oberdorfer's acclaimed book, The Turn

First published in 1991 as The Turn, this is the gripping narrative history of the most important international development of our time―the passage of the United States and the Soviet Union from the Cold War to a new era. Don Oberdorfer makes the reader a privileged behind-the-scenes spectator as U.S. and Soviet leaders take each other's measure and slowly set about their historic task. Oberdorfer writes diplomatic history with a vital difference: extraordinary intimacy made possible by comprehensive interviews with major figures on both sides and exclusive material from a host of other sources.

Now this widely praised book is available in a new, updated paperback edition that continues the narrative up to the dramatic collapse of the Soviet Union. Replete with revealing portraits of historical personalities, as riveting as a spy thriller, this is an enthralling record of history in the making.

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Review:

Don Oberdorfer, former diplomatic correspondent for the Washington Post, chronicles the ending of the cold war in this updated edition of his 1991 book The Turn (a new chapter covers events from the May 1990 summit in Washington to the final dissolution of the Soviet Union in the last days of 1991). Ronald Reagan, who began his presidency with startlingly harsh rhetoric toward the Soviet Union, reached out to the Soviets just as their government, to everyone's eventual surprise, was about to collapse from within. The following years were full of dramatic twists, such as the fast succession of Soviet leaders following the death of Leonid Brezhnev, the controversy over the Soviets shooting down a Korean airliner in 1983, the unlikely emergence of Reagan as a summiteer in Geneva and Reykjavik, and Gorbachev's startling perestroika reforms. Oberdorfer's reputation as a reporter got him access to key insiders on both sides, a crucial factor in the rich detail he brings to explaining a history that seemed astonishing as it unfolded. --Robert McNamara

About the Author:

Don Oberdorfer was a diplomatic correspondent for the Washington Post from 1976 until his retirement in 1993. His previous book, Tet!, a history of the crucial battle of the Vietnam War, was a National Book Award finalist.

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