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Flashpoints: Promise and Peril in a New World Hardcover – December 3, 1991

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Editorial Reviews

From Publishers Weekly

With the decline of Cold War confrontation, the world is plunging headlong into "an age of galloping localism" even as it becomes more economically interdependent. That paradox runs like a thread through this provocative, sobering, very readable look at our possible future in the '90s and beyond. Wright ( Sacred Rage ) and McManus ( Landslide: The Unmaking of the President, 1984-1988 ) envision a "multipolar" world in which no single power can gain the upper hand. In their scenario, the Soviet Union, China and Canada will each dissolve to form new entities, while Turkestan, a new nation or confederation, could unite millions of Muslims from Europe to China. Ironically, even as the Cold Warriors talk peace, arms proliferation, rising terrorism and a wave of ethnic and nationalistic conflict spell an uncertain future in a world increasingly polarized between the industrialized and underdeveloped nations. The authors interviewed street people and heads of state on six continents for this sweeping probe.
Copyright 1991 Reed Business Information, Inc.

From Library Journal

The predictable world of the 1980s has fallen to the wave of change and uncertainty of the 1990s, and all this roiling and boiling in the international arena has generated a spate of books on the topic. Wright and McManus spent two years circling the globe interviewing dozens of people in high places and low. Ranging from politics, to battlefields, to the effect of AIDS (our new version of the Black Death) on future generations, the authors have provided a well written and tightly presented summary of our present condition as a global family, and what our future may hold. The authors point to the spread of democracy (in whatever guise) as representing a special challenge for the First and Second worlds, as the Third World seeks its place in the sun. This book and Jeffrey Bergner's New World Order ( LJ 9/1/91) provide solid analyses of this important subject. Recommended.
- Ed Goedeken, Purdue Univ. Libs., West Lafayette, Ind.
Copyright 1991 Reed Business Information, Inc.

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Product Details

  • Hardcover: 258 pages
  • Publisher: Knopf; 1st edition (December 3, 1991)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0679407081
  • ISBN-13: 978-0679407089
  • Product Dimensions: 9 x 6 x 0.9 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 8.8 ounces
  • Average Customer Review: 5.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (1 customer review)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #9,726,630 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

More About the Author


Robin Wright has reported from more than 140 countries on six continents for The Washington Post, The New Yorker, The New York Times Magazine, TIME magazine, The Atlantic, The Sunday Times of London, the Los Angeles Times, Foreign Affairs, CBS News and many others.
Wright has also been a fellow at the U.S. Institute of Peace, the Woodrow Wilson International Center for Scholars, Yale, Duke, Stanford, the Brookings Institution, Carnegie Endowment for International Peace and the University of California at Santa Barbara.

She is the recipient of the United Nations Correspondents' Association Gold Medal for coverage of international affairs. The American Academy of Diplomacy selected Wright as the journalist of the year for her "distinguished reporting and analysis of international affairs." She also won the National Press Club award for diplomatic reporting, the National Magazine Award for her reportage from Iran in The New Yorker, and the Overseas Press Club Award for "best reporting in any medium requiring exceptional courage and initia¬tive" for coverage of African wars. She was the recipient of a John D. and Catherine T. MacArthur Foundation grant.

She has been a television commentator on ABC, NBC, CBS, PBS, CNN and MSNBC programs, including "Meet the Press," "Face the Nation," "This Week," "Nightline," the PBS Newshour, "Frontline," "Charlie Rose," "Larry King Live," "Washington Week in Review," "The Colbert Report," and HBO's "Real Time."

Wright is the author of "Dreams and Shadows: The Future of the Middle East" (2008), which The New York Times and The Washington Post both selected as one of the most notable books of the year. She was the editor of "The Iran Primer: Power, Politics and U.S. Policy" (2010), which brought together 50 of the world's top Iran experts. Her other books include "The Last Great Revolution: Turmoil and Transformation in Iran" (2000), which was selected as one of the 25 most memorable books of the year by the New York Library Association, "Sacred Rage: The Wrath of Militant Islam" (2001), "Flashpoints: Promise and Peril in a New World" (1991), and "In the Name of God: The Khomeini Decade" (1989).

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0 of 1 people found the following review helpful By David Craig Phillips on February 8, 2009
Format: Hardcover
Must be combined with earlier Landslide tome [re: Reagan Resolution actually trying to practice what the "Reagan-auts" tried to sell] for historical perspective and impacts. Although print media often write a "first draft of history", a curious misnomer exists when DC officialdom's interlopers -- acting as former office holders publishing their breath-taking (sic.) "tell all, kiss all" profit making tomes - most of which pass their gas when leave the auditorium unannounced and unheralded. Therefore: Good riddance to the bloody lot of 'em all, and indeed so! However, McManus retains his stature as one of the truly exceptional & keen observors of activities inside the DC Beltway. Thus doing and expertly so, McManus trains others, guides us then, while remarkably & simultaneously gently nudging us toward Truth with a capital T! We are the better for his insights, often delayed due to over-classification by some self-seeking, pandering mugwumps of no political import: Neither now nor subsequently! History shall damn them after first consigning their lot to the hottest underworld. McManus, by both happy coincidence and boundless enthusiasms, lifts us then soars over both the muck and mud to cut to the quick in fine fashion! Read this tome repeatedly, as I have - each time with much greater appreciation of the intense reportage and investigative work worthy of a John Le Carre novel, at times.
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