Marilyn J. Young and Michael K. Launer. Flights of Fancy, Flight of Doom: KAL 007 and Soviet-American Rhetoric. Lanham, MD: University Press of America, 1988. 333 pp. $29.50 (cloth) $18.50 (paper)

Honoré Catudal
1990 Canadian-American Slavic Studies  
States. He elaborates the rationale and logic behind Soviet views in a comprehensive manner. Overall, then, this is indeed a very useful book. But, it does suffer from several flaws, not all of the author's making. First, the book was published in 1988 and, except for a brief addition of key events in 1987, stops its coverage of events largely after 1985. Nearly all sources are pre-1987 and usually pre-1985. Normally this would not be disastrous. But, with the revolutionary events of 1989, and
more » ... ontinuing development of these changes in 1990, the book needs some updating. The writer is fortunate in one areahis revisionist views clearly anticipated many recent developments far better than did the traditionalists wedded to notions of an unchangeable Soviet Union. In this, his essay on future directions of Soviet strategy is right on target-but it still needs updating. Second, at many points we yearn to know more about what the author himself thinks. He copiously provides us with what others think, but we want more than an encyclopedia. There are excessive quotations in the text to give much of the flavor of the debate between the two sides. But, we need a firmer grasp of his views. Third, this problem is related to an excessive attempt to flatter all the experts in the field. Repeatedly, we are told about the virtues of the various authors. We don't want to hear those words but rather his own! Also, we get a number of unattributed quotes, especially in the footnotes. While sometimes these are of value, more often we begin to wonder who are these unseen experts. In short, this book is basically on the right track in seeking to develop a more "red" team analysis of the "red team" rather than continue the traditional "blue team" analysis of the "red team." But, Catudal needs to develop more faith in his own convictions, cast away the crutches of excessive reliance on other "experts" and give us what we want most-his own views. And I, for one, think they will be well worth hearing in more detail.
doi:10.1163/221023990x00930 fatcat:h5dmtr7eovc7lb4iq2kkote3j4