A Full Life: Reflections at Ninety
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“A warm and detailed memoir.” —Los Angeles Times
Jimmy Carter, thirty-ninth President, Nobel Peace Prize winner, international humanitarian, fisherman, reflects on his full and happy life with pride, humor, and a few second thoughts.
At ninety, Jimmy Carter reflects on his public and private life with a frankness that is disarming. He adds detail and emotion about his youth in rural Georgia that he described in his magnificent An Hour Before Daylight. He writes about racism and the isolation of the Carters. He describes the brutality of the hazing regimen at Annapolis, and how he nearly lost his life twice serving on submarines and his amazing interview with Admiral Rickover. He describes the profound influence his mother had on him, and how he admired his father even though he didn’t emulate him. He admits that he decided to quit the Navy and later enter politics without consulting his wife, Rosalynn, and how appalled he is in retrospect.
In A Full Life, Carter tells what he is proud of and what he might do differently. He discusses his regret at losing his re-election, but how he and Rosalynn pushed on and made a new life and second and third rewarding careers. He is frank about the presidents who have succeeded him, world leaders, and his passions for the causes he cares most about, particularly the condition of women and the deprived people of the developing world.
This is a wise and moving look back from this remarkable man. Jimmy Carter has lived one of our great American lives—from rural obscurity to world fame, universal respect, and contentment. A Full Life is an extraordinary read.
even now I feel inside the hunger for his outstretched hand, a man’s embrace to take me in, the need for just a word of praise. I despised the discipline he used to shape what I should be, not owning up that he might feel his own pain when he punished me. I didn’t show my need to him, since his response to an appeal would not have meant as much to me, or been as real. From those rare times when we did cross the bridge between us, the pure joy survives. I never put aside the past
would close all access by Iran to the outside world if a hostage was harmed and would attack militarily if one was killed. He took my warning seriously and was careful with the well-being of the Americans. One of them was quickly released when his arm seemed to become paralyzed, and he was returned to his home in Maine. Our goal was to free the hostages through diplomacy, but we believed we needed to be prepared for other alternatives. We began planning how to rescue the hostages after they had
The South was affluent and technologically capable of defending itself. The American major general John Singlaub made a public statement in Seoul condemning the plan, and I summoned him to the White House. I described that meeting in my diary: “5/21/77 I met with Major General Singlaub about his statement that if we withdrew troops from South Korea a war would result. He denied making the statement. He said he was just quoting from Korean officials. Then he said that the reporter was not given
and several African nations. My early requests to the president for briefings on key issues were declined or ignored, and when I threatened to call a press conference on the subject, I received a briefing that was largely extracted from current news reports. However, I got along well with Reagan’s five national security advisers and with Secretary of State George Shultz. Especially on my frequent visits to the Middle East region, I would be requested to deliver messages or questions to leaders
Kaunda, Kenneth, 140 Keeping Faith: Memoirs of a President (Jimmy Carter), 154, 204, 229 Kennedy, Bobby, 101 Kennedy, Edward, 105, 106, 108–9, 111 political opposition of, 137, 173, 201–2, 203 Kennedy, John F., 80, 101, 107, 113, 118 Kennedy Center Honors program, 131–32 Kennedy Presidential Library, 229 Kennedy Space Center, 196 Kenya, 129 Kenyatta, Jomo, 129 Kerry, John, 221, 236 Kerry, Teresa, 221 Khomeini, Ayatollah, 170, 171, 202 Khrushchev, Nikita, 199 Kim Il Sung, 191,