Prince of Darkness: Richard Perle: The Kingdom, the Power, and the End of Empire in America

Alan Weisman, Author . Sterling/Union Square $24.95 (291p) ISBN 978-1-4027-5230-8

Brilliant political operative Richard Perle is known for his neoconservative views and hard-line support for expanding America's military might. Making extensive use of interviews with Perle and his supporters and detractors alike, Weisman (Lone Star: The Extraordinary Life and Times of Dan Rather ) illuminates many of the darker corners of this mysterious character. Portraying Perle sympathetically on at least a personal level, Weisman highlights his dedication to improving, as he sees it, the national defense of his country and the skill apparent in his proudest achievements: the Jackson-Vanik amendment forcing the Soviet Union to allow Jews to emigrate and the completion of the INF treaty drawing down Soviet nuclear missiles. Weisman also debunks the idea that Perle is primarily concerned with Israel's security, though at times he seems a little too eager to forgo in-depth analysis in favor of snappy comebacks. Weisman concludes: “If Richard Perle is guilty of anything, it is of a sadly stupefying resolve,” a middle-of-the-road verdict that may be honest but is unlikely to either please Perle's most fervent fans or convert his opponents. (Nov.)

Reviewed on: 09/24/2007
Release date: 11/01/2007
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