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The Two Michaels

Two Canadians in prison and a tense showdown between global superpowers.
Genres: Current Events, Politics

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The Two Michaels is a timely and highly-readable book – a gripping human drama that also tells a bigger story about the fast-changing world of international diplomacy, superpower rivalry, and the struggle to secure the Internet.”

– MADELEINE ALBRIGHT, former US Secretary of State

Landing in Vancouver on a flight from Hong Kong on December 2018, Chinese telecom executive Meng Wanzhou was arrested by Canadian authorities with an American extradition warrant. The US Department of Justice accused Meng of fraud and bypassing sanctions against Iran. Nine days later, in an act of retaliation, China arrested two Canadians—Michael Spavor, an entrepreneur, and Michael Kovrig, a peace advocate—charging them with spying.

Imprisoned and interrogated, the Two Michaels became hostages in a tense showdown between China and the United States over not only the Meng extradition but whether East or West will control the future of the internet.

In this timely and essential book, journalist Mike Blanchfield and international affairs expert Fen Osler Hampson combine groundbreaking original reporting and keen analysis to tell this gripping and ongoing story of cyber espionage, life-and-death diplomacy, and global superpowers in conflict.

“The compelling, tragic story of the Two Michaels exposes the dark side of the new China and why the world must not forget them. This book describes in powerful detail the events that led to their arrest and imprisonment. It also puts the struggle to free them in the wider geopolitical context of the new Cold War between China and the West.”

– WILLIAM BROWDER, founder and CEO of Hermitage Capital Management, political activist, and author of The New York Times bestseller Red Notice

Fen Osler Hampson, Mike Blanchfield

Fen Osler Hampson is Chancellor’s Professor at Carleton University and President of the World Refugee & Migration Council. Mike Blanchfield is the international affairs writer for The Canadian Press, based in Ottawa.

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