The Presidency: Not Since Jefferson Dined Alone

Not Since Jefferson Dined Alone

Mikhail Gorbachev sat on Nancy Reagan's right. On her left was Richard Perle, former Pentagon hard-liner and Soviet nemesis. The President was flanked by Raisa Gorbachev and Jeane Kirkpatrick. And the State Dining Room was filled with the unlikeliest 125 people one could imagine supping together: Henry Kissinger and Meadowlark Lemon, great Globetrotters both; Claudette Colbert and Moscow's supreme propagandist, Alexander Yakovlev; Ted Graber, Nancy's interior designer, and Georgi Arbatov, the Kremlin's noted American expert; Joe DiMaggio and Pearl Bailey; David Rockefeller, Mary Lou Retton and Saul Bellow.

The centuries whispered to them. "I knew this was a special moment," Mrs....