Television audiences around the world witness in horror the Moscow assassination attempt upon the American and Russian presidents. The captured gunman is revealed to be the son of one of Britain's most infamous nuclear defectors, which brings the believe-nothing Charlie Muffin into the investigation.
There are no customer reviews available at this time. Would you like to write a review?
Thomas Dunne Books
December 01, 2002
Number of Print Pages*
Adobe DRM EPUB
* Number of eBook pages may differ. Click here for more information.
Excerpt from Kings of Many Castles by Brian Freemantle
The state visit was crucial for the political future of both leaders, which made maximum public and media exposure as important as the long ago concluded but unannounced nuclear missile defense treaty that was to be its triumphant, reelection assuring climax.
The apparent negotiations had been conducted with the surgical precision befitting the life-saving operation both considered it to be. To establish the impression of nation-protecting intractability, the American secretary of state had very publicly headed the three main delegations to Moscow and received the Russian foreign minister in Washington on a matching number of media-hyped occasions. After each of which they'd made dour-faced statements of insurmountable difficulties, left behind in the other's capital additional negotiators and on their returning flights personally given unattributable diplomatic briefings that success would be a miracle.
The public event preparations were as perfectly orchestrated. The leaked details -- even suggested photographs -- of what America's fashion-icon First Lady had chosen were balanced by those of the Russian president's equally fashion-conscious and vivacious wife, setting up couture competitions at the Bolshoi, the Tchaikovsky Conservatory and the Moscow Arts Theatre as well as at the intended official state banquets.
All of which were featured some way down the list of security considerations that had consumed the American Secret Service and the Russian Presidential Protection division of the Federal Security Service for as long as but far more actively than the time supposedly spent by treaty negotiators.
Both security groups -- initially separately but soon in single, protesting voice -- were appalled at the completeness of the intended open exposure.
Their argument that the major part of the arrival ceremony be in the totally-controlled inner courtyard of the Kremlin and not in the open, at the Moscow White House, was impatiently swept aside because of the Kremlin's most recent association with communism, whose reemerging official political party, the Kommumisticheskaya Partiya Rossiiskoi Federatsii, was seriously threatening the president's second term reelection. The symbolism of the White House, against which Boris Yeltsin sent tanks in 1993 to defeat the communist-led opposition of the Congress of Peoples'Deputies, better suited both presidents. It took a week of persistent argument, finally adjudicated by the chiefs of staff of both leaders, to get the arrival of Air Force One switched from Moscow's international Sheremet'yevo airport to a much more easily vetted and security-assured military airfield on the eastern outskirts of the city. There was an even more protracted dispute over the joint insistence that the two men, and their wives, should drive into the city in an open-topped car along a previously publicized route which Muscovites would be encouraged to line to cheer and wave pre-issued national flags.