Remembering the failed coup that brought down a superpower

Remembering the failed coup that brought down a superpower

No headline I’ve ever written, no headline I’ve ever read, has brought me greater joy than the one my father held up at Victoria train station one August afternoon in 1991: THE COUP COLLAPSES. 

Nearly 30 years later, I can still recall the angle of the summer light illuminating the Evening Standard, the broad grin on Dad’s face, the sheer relief flooding through my brain. Suddenly it didn’t matter that I was late meeting my family on this, the first day I’d been allowed to roam London on my own. I was late because I’d dawdled in the crowd outside Downing Street, waiting for news. “It’s such a shame,” a voice in the crowd had said. In those pre-just-pull-out-your-phone days, the voice sounded like confirmation of our deepest collective fear.  Read more…

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Remembering the failed coup that brought down a superpower