BOOKS: LIFE AMONG THE RUINS

TWO JOURNALISTS LOOK BEHIND THE SOVIET COLLAPSE AND THE UNRULY EFFORTS TO BUILD SOMETHING NEW

When the last chief of the Soviet Union's KGB published his memoirs last year, David Remnick went to see him in Moscow. He found that while Vladimir Kryuchkov had turned pallid and squinty, he was still a man with ambitions. "I think I have real potential," the spymaster said, urging Remnick to give his book a plug in print. Now there's a tidy tombstone for the cold war: the former jailer of the old "evil empire" scrounging for free publicity in the West.

Michael Dobbs saw the death of the Soviet system foretold in the bloated face of President Leonid Brezhnev...

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