Excerpt from Airlift to America by Tom Shachtman, plus links to reviews, author biography & more

Summary |  Excerpt |  Reviews |  Beyond the Book |  Readalikes |  Genres & Themes |  Author Bio

Airlift to America

How Barack Obama, Sr., John F. Kennedy, Tom Mboya, and 800 East African Students Changed Their World and Ours

by Tom Shachtman

Airlift to America by Tom Shachtman
  • Critics' Opinion:

    Readers' Opinion:

     Not Yet Rated
  • Published:
    Sep 2009, 288 pages

  • Rate this book


Book Reviewed by:
Jo Perry

Buy This Book

About this Book

Print Excerpt


Obama lost the 2008 Massachusetts primary to Clinton but won many other primaries in the late winter and early spring, and amassed significant numbers of delegates even in states where he came in second. His delegate total continued to rise until June 4, 2008, when it became obvious even to die-hard Clinton supporters that Barack Obama would win the Democratic nomination.

In a speech announcing the delegate total that put him over the top, he called his victory a “defining moment for our nation,” the nominating of an African- American as the presidential candidate of a major political party. “[T]onight we mark the end of one historic journey with the beginning of another— a journey that will bring a new and better day to America.”

Five months later, in the general election, Obama was elected as the nation’s forty-fourth president. His new prominence as a result of his victory emphasized that much more needed to be known about the East African airlifts, which had started his ball rolling.

Like the story of Obama’s rise, the airlifts were an expression of a quintessentially American trait, an aspect of what America had so consistently offered to the peoples of the rest of the world: an open, helping hand, and the experience and understanding of what it means to be free, to be educated, and to conceive personal dreams that have a substantial chance of being realized.

This book tells that story, recounting the creation, execution, and achievements of those airlifts, including their important effects on the presidential elections of 1960 and 2008, as well as on the integration of American campuses, on the way that foreign students were recruited for the United States and treated once here, and on the health and survival of the independent nations of East Africa in their most formative years.

Excerpted from Airlift to America by Tom Shachtman. Copyright © 2009 by Tom Shachtman. Excerpted by permission of St. Martin's Press. All rights reserved. No part of this excerpt may be reproduced or reprinted without permission in writing from the publisher.

Membership Advantages
  • Reviews
  • "Beyond the Book" backstories
  • Free books to read and review (US only)
  • Find books by time period, setting & theme
  • Read-alike suggestions by book and author
  • Book club discussions
  • and much more!
  • Just $10 for 3 months or $35 for a year
  • More about membership!

Support BookBrowse

Become a Member and discover books that entertain, engage & enlighten!

Join Today!

Editor's Choice

  • Book Jacket
    The Noise of Time
    by Julian Barnes
    Confession: I do two terrible – some say unforgivable – things while reading a book. First...
  • Book Jacket
    Smoke
    by Dan Vyleta
    In Dan Vyleta's universe, set in an alternate Victorian England, people engaging in sinful thought ...
  • Book Jacket: Golden Hill
    Golden Hill
    by Francis Spufford
    Spufford brings American history to raucous life through the story of Mr. Richard Smith, a ...

Win this book!
Win The Library of Light and Shadow

The Library of Light and Shadow by M.J. Rose

"Possibly her best yet. A sensuous, sumptuous, and spellbinding novel." - Kirkus Reviews

Enter

First Impressions

  • Book Jacket

    The Necklace
    by Claire McMillan

    For readers of The Nest, the intelligent, intoxicating story of long-simmering family secrets.
    Reader Reviews

Word Play

Solve this clue:

T H Are B T O

and be entered to win..

Book Discussion
Book Jacket
June by Miranda Beverly-Whittemore

A novel of suspense and passion about a terrible mistake that changed a family forever.

About the book
Join the discussion!

Books that     
entertain,
     engage

 & enlighten

Visitors can view some of BookBrowse for free. Full access is for members only.

Join Today!

Your guide toexceptional          books

BookBrowse seeks out and recommends books that we believe to be best in class. Books that will whisk you to faraway places and times, that will expand your mind and challenge you -- the kinds of books you just can't wait to tell your friends about.