Pulitzer Prize-winning author Anne Applebaum describes the tactics the Soviets used after World War II to take over and transform much of Eastern Europe. Her book Iron Curtain was recently nominated for the National Book Award.
4 Months, 3 Weeks, and 2 Days, a new film about a young woman's illegal abortion in Ceausescu's Romania, won the top prize at Cannes and has just opened in the U.S. It's a fierce and unsentimental film; Terry Gross talks to Mungiu about growing up in a totalitarian state, and why he wanted to make the movie.
Retired U.S. Army Colonel Stuart A. Herrington. He spent 30 years as a military intelligence officer, serving in Europe, Asia, Latin America and the Middle East. He was the Army's authority on counterintelligence and on the interrogation and debriefing of defectors and prisoners of war. He's written the new book "Traitors Among Us: Inside the Spy Catcher's World" (Presido).
Author Harvey Klehr. He's co-authored a new book that examines how the Soviets controlled the American Communist party. The Communist Party as it existed in the United States is the only radical party in America to be governed by a foreign country. "The Soviet World of American Communism" draws information from documents in recently opened Soviet archives (with co-authors John Earl Haynes & Kyrill M. Anderson; Yale University Press). Klehr is a professor of Politics and History at Emory University.
Assistant Professor of Political Science, Sarah Mendelson. She spent a year in Moscow working for the National Democratic Institute. Her work helped the Russian reformist political parties in their preparation of the Parliamentary and Presidential elections. The goal of the Institute is to bring modern Western campaign techniques into Russian elections. Mendelson also talks to Terry about being a young American expatriate in the former Soviet Union. She currently teaches poltiical science at the State University of New York at Albany.
Chinese-Canadian journalist, Jan Wong.... She went to China as an idealistic radical student in the 70's and believed in the Cultural Revolution and even informed on a couple of people. But she eventually left China, totally disillusioned. Years later she returned as a reporter for the Toronto Globe and Mail and covered the Tiananmen Square massacre. She talks about her new book, "Red China Blues". (Doubleday/Anchor Books, 1996)
Congress has decided to conduct a study of the role of the Central Intelligence Agency in the post-Cold War world. The agency suffered a shake-up following the discovery of the double agent Aldrich Ames. Pulitzer Prize winner Tim Weiner writes about the CIA for "The New York Times." He talks with Terry Gross today about what changes may take place in the agency as a result of the investigation.
Shanghai-born author, Anchee Min. She grew up in China during the last years of Mao's Cultural Revolution. In her memoir, "Red Azalea" (Pantheon), Min recounts her experiences as an 11-year old leader in her school's Little Red Guard, then as a laborer at a work camp where she became the secret lover of her female commander. When Madam Mao began her reform of China's film industry, Min was chosen from 20,000 candidates to become a screen actress because she had a face that was thought to represent the working class.
Charles Kupchan, Senior Fellow for Europe at the Council on Foreign Relations and former Director of European Affairs on the National Security Council in the Clinton White House. He'll discuss the political motivations of the European players in NATO's ultimatum to Bosnian Serb forces. The Bosnian Serbs must withdraw artillery and mortars from their stranglehold positions on Sarajevo by February 21st or face NATO air strikes.
William Taubman is a political science professor at Amherst College. He is a frequent visitor to Russia and is currently working on a biography of Nikita Krushchev. Taubman talks to Terry about the status of the reform movement in Russia, the legacy of Communism and the mood of the Russian people.
British Journalist Timothy Garton Ash. George Kennan has compared Garton Ash's powers of political observation to those of de Toqueville's. ASH's beat is Eastern Europe, and he has been on hand to chronicle the popular disavowal of Communism there (Garton Ash's classic account of the Prague Uprising in 1986 is "The Magic Lantern"). His most recent book concerns the German Re-Unification, and what Germany's role will be in the new Europe: "In Europe's Name: Germany & the Divided Continent" (Random House).
Slovak novelist Martin Simecka discusses life after the split of Czechoslovakia. His latest novel to be published in the U. S. is "Year of the Frog." Prior to the fall of Communism, Simecka and his father were dissidents.
New York Times European diplomatic correspondent, Craig Whitney. Whitney is the author of a new book about espionage and spy swaps during the cold war in the two Germanys: "Spy Trader" (Times Books). Now living in Bonn, Whitney reports on the issues surrounding European unity: the rise of ethnic conflicts, and the crisis in Bosnia. (Interview by Marty Moss-Coane)
An expert on Central Asia and Afghanistan, Barnett Rubin, Associate Professor of Political Science at Columbia University, and a former Peace Fellow with the United States Institute of Peace He's just returned from three former Soviet republics which have large Muslim populations, which he says are now run by ex-communists. Rubin will also discuss the aftermath of the Afghan War, and how many of the radical Arabs who went to Afghan to help the rebels are now taking their "holy war" elsewhere.
The Russian literary critic and dissident writer has written his first novel, "Russian Beauty." The book, about a young bisexual beauty who leaves the provinces for Moscow, has been a best-seller in Russia. Erofeev is also the son of a Soviet diplomat.
Boris Yeltsin may be forced out of office tomorrow when the Congress of People's Deputies meets in a special session. William Taubman, a political science professor at Amherst College, was in Russia this January, and has visited the beleaguered country five times in the last 18 months. He talks about the current chaotic state of Russian politics.
The former New York Times reporter was based in Poland from 1979-1982 during the rise of the Solidarity movement and martial law. Darnton just returned to Poland and wrote about it for the New York Times. He'll talk with Terry about his observations.
Journalist Lawrence Weschler. He's a staff writer for the New Yorker and has been covering Eastern Europe for the past decade. Terry talks with Weschler about leadership in Czechoslovakia, where parliamentary elections were just held.
Documentary filmmaker Marcel Ophuls. He is best known for his 1970 work "The Sorrow and the Pity," about the conduct of the French people during the Holocaust. He also made the film "Hotel Terminus: The Life and Times of Klaus Barbie." His latest work is about life behind the iron curtain and the changes underway in Europe since the fall of the Berlin wall.