The whole world can change in twenty years - and it did. Where is America going? Just look at the decades between 1988 and 2008. As America collectively exhaled at the end of the Cold War, we loosened our grip on the fear of nuclear confrontation for the first time since WWII. Some scholars even characterized teh collapse of the Soviet Union as the end of history itself. Peace was palpable. But America's domestic and global vitals changed almost instantly, and turbulence, not tranquility, marked the turn of the century: the war on drugs, race riots, values debates, deep economic shifts, and the growing threat of terrorism on U.S. soil that would tragically play out in 2001. And there were storms abroad: U.S. forces landed in Panama, Somalia, Kuwai, Afghanistan, and Iraq. Names such as Yasser Arafat, Saddam Hussein and Osama bin Laden folded seamlessly - and almost instantly - into the American vernacular. Where is America going? Recent history offers the only signposts. What Bennett makes clear is that we are at a critical juncture: "Today, the levels of both hope and fear are at a high point. Whether we can expand the former and reduce the latter... will depend on what we do with the challenges before us today."