For more than twenty years, Jonathan Alter has enjoyed a front-row seat in history. In his widely acclaimed Newsweek column, Alter has witnessed the biggest events of our time. He was in the Soviet Union when communism was collapsing, in Los Angeles after the Rodney King riots, at Bill Clinton's impeachment trial, in Florida during the historic 2000 recount, at Ground Zero just after 9/11, on an aircraft carrier on the eve of war with Iraq, in New Orleans after Hurricane Katrina, and much more.
He has interviewed today's major newsmakers - Bill and Hillary Clinton, Barack Obama, John McCain - more often than any print journalist, as well as a cast of other colorful characters from Paul McCartney to Richard Nixon to his own mother. Whether he's writing about the 2008 presidential campaign or his own bout with cancer, Alter's timeless analysis and revered prose style set a high standard for political commentary at the turn of the century. Here is our recent history, in the voice of one of America's finest nonfiction writers.