book cover of In the Time of the Tyrants

In the Time of the Tyrants

(1990)
Panama, 1968-1990
A novel by

 
 
Publisher's Weekly
This scathing indictment of U.S. Central American policy by an American novelist and a Panamanian journalist chronicles 21 years of misrule from the advent of Omar Torrijos to the fall of Manuel Noriega. In describing the power struggle following Torrijos's death in 1981, Koster and Sanchez charge that the Reagan administration helped Noriega, its ''protege and accomplice,'' steal the '84 election, and they scoff at George Bush's claim to have been unaware of Noriega's involvement in drug traffic. The book deals primarily with the crimes and cruelties of Torrijos (''a tyrant, murderer, and thief'') and Noriega (''an entirely untrustworthy, totally amoral, sadomasochistic sociopath''), and reveals how the U.S. ''midwifed'' the Panamanian dictatorship into existence in '68, supported it materially and morally in its various permutations, then cut out the very cancer it had created in last year's military intervention. A credible, informative report, it is, however, studded with angry charges not supported with documentation, for example, that Bush, when vice-president, shared a metaphorical bed with the dopers. (Oct.)

Library Journal
Researched and written several years before the downfall of Manuel Noriega, this book is a powerful indictment of U.S. policy in Panama. The authors (Koster is an American novelist and Borbon is an exiled Panamanian journalist) concentrate on the conflict between ''visible'' U.S. government policies and the ''invisible'' arrangements set in place by the CIA. The most effective sections of the book are the inside accounts of the abuses of power by Omar Torrijos and the brutality of Noriega's regime. Koster was an eyewitness to the U.S. invasion of Panama in December 1989, and he contributes an appropriate concluding chapter to the saga. Panama's descent into tyranny does not make for easy reading, but this is an extremely important book for any serious student of American foreign policy. Some of the authors' specific claims may be conjecture, yet the overall effect of the book is chilling and thought-provoking. For academic and public libraries.-- Thomas A. Karel, Franklin & Marshall Coll. Lib., Lancaster, Pa.



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Used availability for R M Koster's In the Time of the Tyrants

Hardback Editions

October 1990 : USA Hardback
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Title: In the Time of the Tyrants: Panama, 1968-1990
Author(s): R M Koster, Guillermo Sanchez
ISBN: 0-393-02696-5 / 978-0-393-02696-2 (USA edition)
Publisher: W W Norton & Co Inc
Availability: Amazon   Amazon UK   


October 1990 : UK Hardback

Title: In the Time of the Tyrants: Panama, 1968-90
Author(s): R M Koster, Guillermo S Borbon
ISBN: 0-436-20016-3 / 978-0-436-20016-8 (UK edition)
Publisher: Martin Secker & Warburg Ltd
Availability: Amazon   Amazon UK   Amazon CA   


Paperback Editions

October 1991 : USA Paperback
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Title: In the Time of Tyrants: Panama : 1968-1990
Author(s): R M Koster, Guillermo Sanchez
ISBN: 0-393-30844-8 / 978-0-393-30844-0 (USA edition)
Publisher: W W Norton & Co Inc
Availability: Amazon   Amazon UK   Amazon CA