The Crusader: Ronald Reagan and the Fall of Communism

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Harper Collins, Oct 13, 2009 - Political Science - 432 pages
4 Reviews

Based on extraordinary research: a major reassessment of Ronald Reagan's lifelong crusade to dismantle the Soviet Empire–including shocking revelations about the liberal American politician who tried to collude with USSR to counter Reagan's efforts

Paul Kengor's God and Ronald Reagan made presidential historian Paul Kengor's name as one of the premier chroniclers of the life and career of the 40th president. Now, with The Crusader, Kengor returns with the one book about Reagan that has not been written: The story of his lifelong crusade against communism, and of his dogged–and ultimately triumphant–effort to overthrow the Soviet Union.

Drawing upon reams of newly declassified presidential papers, as well as untapped Soviet media archives and new interviews with key players, Kengor traces Reagan's efforts to target the Soviet Union from his days as governor of California to the fall of the Berlin Wall and the collapse of what he famously dubbed the "Evil Empire." The result is a major revision and enhancement of what historians are only beginning to realize: That Reagan not only wished for the collapse of communism, but had a deep and specific understanding of what it would take––and effected dozens of policy shifts that brought the USSR to its heels within a decade of his presidency.

The Crusader makes use of key sources from behind the Iron Curtain, including one key memo that implicates a major American liberal politician–still in office today–in a scheme to enlist Soviet premier Yuri Andropov to help defeat Reagan's 1984 reelection bid. Such new finds make The Crusader not just a work of extraordinary history, but a work of explosive revelation that will be debated as hotly in 2006 as Reagan's policies were in the 1980s.

 

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User Review  - rsplenda477 - LibraryThing

This is the first historical book that I've read on Ronald Reagan. I bought it about five years ago, and never got around to it. I finally decided to give it a go, and I was both concerned and ... Read full review

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User Review  - norwayken - LibraryThing

Dr. Paul Kengor, a political science professor at Grove City (Penn.) College, does a masterful job documenting President Reagan's disdain for communism and how he transformed his attitude into a ... Read full review

Contents

Rock River Rescuer
3
The 1940s
10
1950 to mid1960s
21
Late 1960s
30
1970s
40
1980
56
THE FIRST TERM
71
January to November 1981
73
October to December 1983
190
1984
200
1987
263
1988
273
1989
285
19901991
294
Drifting Back
305
EPILOGUE
313

December 1981
84
January to June 1982
112
June 78 1982
133
MidJune to December 1982
146
1983
165
NOTES
321
ACKNOWLEDGMENTS
397
INDEX
403
Copyright

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About the author (2009)

Paul Kengor is the author of the New York Times extended-list bestseller God and Ronald Reagan as well as God and George W. Bush and The Crusader. He is a professor of political science and director of the Center for Vision and Values at Grove City College. He lives with his wife and children in Grove City, Pennsylvania.

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