THE PRESIDENCY by HUGH SIDEY: It Began with a Cigarette

The Presidency/Hugh Sidey

It Began with a Cigarette

Nearly ten years ago, a small band of wary Americans boarded an air-worn converted C-141 tanker. They roared off into the night from Andrews Air Force Base, held their ears from the shattering sound, chewed on half-cooked steaks, and eleven hours later stumbled onto the Helsinki tarmac as the November sun set. It was the U.S. advance guard sent to begin talking with the Soviet Union about limiting strategic nuclear arms. Delegation Chief Gerard Smith turned on his hotel TV and watched the Soviets get...

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