Mikhail Gorbachev and Zdenek Mlynar were friends for half a century after they first crossed paths as students in 1950. In 1993 they decided their conversations might be of interest to others and so began to tape-record them. From reminiscences of their starry-eyed university days to reflections on the use of force to save socialism to contemplation of the end of the Cold War, this is a candid picture of Gorbachev.
Mikhail Gorbachev, secretary general of the Soviet Union, 1985-1991, now heads the Gorbachev Foundation in Moscow and lectures widely around the world. His most recent book is Gorbachev: On My Country and the World.The late Zdenek Mlynar (1931-1997) was a leader of the Prague Spring of 1968 and a prominent member of the Czech dissident movement. His son, Vladimir, is the current minister without portfolio of the Czech Republic.