South Sudan achieved independence from Sudan in July 2011, marking the end of Africa's longest civil war. The new republic’s birth was celebrated not only by its long-oppressed people, but by three U.S. presidents and the legions of Americans who championed their struggle. But South Sudan’s guerillas-turned-governors soon turned their guns on one another, plunging their new nation into chaos. Drawing on firsthand accounts as an analyst and diplomat, Vertin brings us from battlefields to palaces to negotiating tables as we meet the freedom fighters, politicians, and ordinary citizens who animate this story. Examining America's outsized interventions over the course of two decades, he wrestles with America at its best and its worst.
Vertin will be in conversation with Elise Labott, former global affairs correspondent for CNN.