This is probably the most comprehensive volume written about the events which might be considered a landmark in contemporary history. Diego Cordovez, who served as Under Secretary-General for special Political Affairs of the United Nations from 1981 to 1988, recounts the negotiating process that eventually brought about the peace settlement and the withdrawal of Soviet troops from Afghanistan. He is doing it as an insider. It was his mission which, in the end, brought about a solution to a crisis defined by Mikhail Gorbachev as a `bleeding wound'. Mr. Cordovez' narrative, based wholly on his personal notes and on earlier unpublished documentary sources, is therefore mostly reliable and accurate and is extremely useful for researchers and practitioners of international relations.