History Makers: Interviews

Article excerpt

HISTORY MAKERS: Interviews, Fred Schultz, ed., Naval Institute Press, Annapolis, MD, 2000, 256 pages, $27.95.

The U.S. Naval Institute publishes Naval History, which features interviews with interesting people tied in one way or another to the U.S. Navy or the sea. David McCullough writes about it; Jean-Michel Cousteau lives for it; Ken Burns films it. Many of the interviewees are U.S. Navy or U.S. Marine Corps careerists or veterans. History Makers, edited by Fred Schultz, is a collection of some of the better interviews from 1995 through 2000. Interviewees include historians, underwater explorers and exploiters, newsmen, actors and filmmakers, military and political leaders, and a couple of astronauts. Included are Ernest Borgnine, William Crowe, Dick Cheney, Art Buchwald, Tom Brokaw, and Shelby Foote, Jr., among others.

In one of the stronger interviews, pilot and astronaut William F. Readdy talks about his time in the A-- 6, the Russian space program, his shuttle experiences, and the general development of the U.S. Shuttle Program from a military to a scientific or technical one. He gives his views on the Program's future; mankind's future in space, including the prospects for a manned trip to Mars and Russian-American cooperation; and career prospects in space for today's youth. He also draws an interesting analogy between landing the shuttle and landing on an aircraft carrier.

Sometimes, the interviews end just as they are getting interesting. For some of the lightweights, such as Douglas Fairbanks, Jr. …