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The latter months of 1986 were an extremely busy time in the Presidency; a congressional session marked by important debates over tax reform, Central America, and trade legislation; an historic meeting with Soviet General Secretary Gorbachev in Reykjavik, Iceland; and off-year congressional elections. In these documents one can not only trace the positions of the administration on all of these issues but also see significant progress in furthering the administration's agenda. In Iceland, for example, I remained firm in my decision to proceed with our Strategic Defense Initiative—a decision that I believe sent an important message to the Soviet leadership and cleared the way for the hard bargaining that led to further progress on arms reductions.

These documents reflect, however, not just these specific issues I have mentioned. They also reveal the national trends of these times—trends like continued economic growth and America's increased interest in furthering democracy around the world, especially in places like Afghanistan, Nicaragua, and Angola.

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