A Pope and a President
John Paul II, Ronald Reagan, and the Extraordinary Untold Story of the 20th Century
Even as historians credit Ronald Reagan and Pope John Paul II with hastening the end of the Cold War, they have failed to recognize the depth or significance of the bond that developed between the two leaders.
Acclaimed scholar and bestselling author Paul Kengor changes that.
In this fascinating book, he reveals a singular bond—which included a spiritual connection between the Catholic pope and the Protestant president—that drove the two men to confront what they knew to be the great evil of the twentieth century: Soviet communism.
Reagan and John Paul II almost didn't have the opportunity to forge this relationship: just six weeks apart in the spring of 1981, they took bullets from would-be assassins. But their strikingly similar near-death experiences brought them close together—to Moscow's dismay.Based on Kengor's tireless archival digging and his unique access to Reagan insiders, A Pope and a President is full of revelations. It takes you inside private meetings between Reagan and John Paul II and into the Oval Office, the Vatican, the CIA, the Kremlin, and many points beyond.
Nancy Reagan called John Paul II her husband's "closest friend"; Reagan himself told Polish visitors that the pope was his "best friend." When you read this book, you will understand why. As kindred spirits, Ronald Reagan and John Paul II united in pursuit of a supreme objective—and in doing so they changed history.
Published: September, 2018
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"Kengor breaks new ground." —World magazine "This book superbly captures and perfectly portrays the profound depth of the bond between John Paul II and Ronald Reagan." —Washington Times "Dr. Kengor's book is extraordinary. . . . A historical tome that is not only detailed, informative, and educational, but also inspiring and encouraging." —The Imaginative Conservative Praise for Paul Kengor"No Reagan biographer or scholar knows Ronald Reagan and conservatism like Paul Kengor." —Michael Reagan"[Kengor] has written the most exhaustive and definitive account of Communism's twentieth-century assault on America to date." —Townhall"Mr. Kengor's research is prodigious, his analysis keen and insightful, his writing clear, and his work distinguished. His command of the Reagan legacy is incomparable." —Tony Dolan, chief speechwriter and special assistant to President Reagan"Kengor makes clear just how central the defeat of the Soviet Union was to Reagan's personal project." —National Review"Combines great story-telling with his commitment to scholarly detail." —Peter Schweizer, bestselling author of Reagan's War"[Kengor provides] more fascinating and never-before-reported details about how Ronald Reagan succeeded than any other Cold War historian. . . . Kengor somehow got his hands on more secret documents than the KGB." —American Thinker"Kengor has unearthed eye-popping new information that left me amazed." —Fred Barnes, Weekly Standard"Provides authoritative insight into Reagan's campaign to destroy Soviet Communism." —Richard Pipes, professor of history, emeritus, Harvard University"Kengor assembles a wealth of material." —National Catholic Reporter"There are few historians who are closer students of the Reagan message, his thoughts, his utterances, and his convictions than Paul Kengor." —William J. Bennett, President Reagan's secretary of education