Synopses & Reviews
The Islamic revolution. The Star Wars initiative. The Achille Lauro hijacking. The rise of the Moral Majority. The bombing of Libya. The Reykjavik summit. The hostages in Lebanon. The funding of the contras. These are some of the major news stories of the American 1980s, all of them part of an overarching story, the presidency of Ronald Reagan, the man whose character and conservative ideology defined the decade. Now these stories are told by the men and women who lived them in an unprecedented oral history of the era, from Reagan's first run on Washington in 1976 to his legacy today. Deborah and Gerald Strober have interviewed more than one hundred key players of the Reagan years, not only the president's closest friends and advisers but also some of his most vocal detractors. The testimony of these witnesses -- always candid and detailed and sometimes contradictory -- is woven into a single rich narrative, at once a chronicle of national and international politics of the period and a fascinating composite portrait of the man at the center of events. No other book takes us farther inside the Reagan White House or brings us closer to Reagan himself. Here are the members of the president's inner circle -- James Baker, Michael Deaver, Edwin Meese, and Don Regan -- speaking frankly about their influence on his political decision-making, and about Nancy Reagan's far greater influence. Here are leaders of the contras and the Sandinistas, of Israel and its adversaries, examining Reagan's policies in Central America and the Middle East. Here are C. Everett Koop on Reagan's attitude toward AIDS, Jerry Falwell on his fear of Armageddon, and Manuel Noriega on his use and abuse of Panama. Andhere, in a tour de force of research and reporting, is the most complete account yet of the U.S. invasion of Grenada, in the words of all the key politicians, strategists, and military personnel on both sides of the incident. The final years of the Reagan presidency were dominated by Iran-contra, and the Strobers' reconstruction of the scandal is masterly. The intricate web of events, from the first arms-for-hostages deal to the special investigation and its political aftermath, is traced clearly by those who wove it -- the arms brokers, the CIA, Oliver North, Fawn Hall, Lawrence Walsh, even the hostages themselves. How do the Strobers do it? asks Sidney Zion. They manage to talk to all the untouchables . . . and the result is terrific -- history on the hoof. Reagan: The Man and His Presidency is oral history at its best -- an immediate and important historical document that brings the makers of history alive in their own voices.
A fascinating oral history, drawn from more than 100 interviews with Reagan era insiders
Morning in America. The "Star Wars" initiative. The advent of AIDS. The invasion of Grenada. Trickle-down economics. The Achille Lauro hijacking. The bombing of Libya. The Iran-Contra scandal. These are some of the major stories of the American 1980s, all of them part of an overarching story, the presidency of Ronald Reagan, the man whose personality, character, and conservative ideology defined the decade. Now these stories are retold by the men and women who lived them -- Reagan's friends, aides, cabinet members, and political opponents; journalists, critics, and foreign heads of state -- in an unprecedented oral history of the era, from Reagan's failed run at the presidency in 1976 to his legacy today.
Table of Contents
Part one. Lifeguard (117 min.) / written and produced by Adriana Bosch -- Part two. An American crusade (146 min.) / written and produced by Austin Hoyt.