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The inauguration of George HW Bush as president in January 1989 was the culmination of a career built on privilege: a series of political promotions ending at the White House. The 41st president of the United States had previously served eight years as vice-president to Ronald Reagan and was the first serving vice-president for more than 150 years to be elected to the highest office. His term in office was defined by his foreign policy at a time when communism was collapsing in Eastern Europe and the dissolution of the USSR left the US as the world's only superpower. His policies helped restore the credibility of the US in the rest of the world and lay to rest the ghost of the intervention in Vietnam. Full story

1 December