I Want to Stay the Course

In an exclusive interview, a determined Gorbachev shows he is not ready to disappear gently into the pages of history

It was a stunning transformation. The Mikhail Gorbachev who had appeared on Soviet television Thursday evening was a defeated man -- exhausted, disgusted, frustrated, fed up, ready to quit. Even the commentator on the relatively pro- Gorbachev state TV network described the performance as having the look and feel of a "farewell interview."

But the next afternoon it was a different man who received TIME for the magazine's third interview in five years. Gorbachev had clearly decided to use the session to counteract the widespread impression that his presidency was mortally wounded by what several of his advisers had earlier in...

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