A Friend in Need

In peril at home, Yeltsin heads for a summit with Clinton, hoping it will save his reforms (This is an updated text of the story; an earlier version appears in

some editions of this issue)

The cold war offered few grander pageants than summit meetings between the leader of the free world and the ruler of the Soviet empire. Whether the venue was Vienna, Washington, Moscow or a brooding house by the sea in Reykjavik, the sessions carried an air of high history, a sense that the fate of the earth depended on how these two men got along. As the leaders greeted each other, TV cameras carried the handshake around the world and commentators tried to read far-ranging implications in this smile or that frown.

All that was supposed to...

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