The birth of South Sudan was celebrated the world round?a triumph for global justice and the end of one of the world‚Äôs most devastating wars. The Republic‚Äôs historic independence was acclaimed not only by its long-oppressed people but also by three U.S. presidents and the legions of Americans who championed their cause. But the celebration would not last: South Sudan‚Äôs freedom-fighters soon plunged their new nation back into chaos, shattering the promise of liberation and exposing the hubris of their American backers. Drawing on extraordinary personal stories of identity, liberation, and survival, this narrative tells an epic story of paradise won and then lost. Zach Vertin‚Äôs firsthand accounts from deadly war zones to the halls of Washington power bring listeners on an extraordinary journey into the rise and fall of the world‚Äôs newest state. South Sudan‚Äôs untold story is a unique episode in global history?an unprecedented experiment in international state-building?and a cautionary tale. A Rope from the Sky is propelled by characters both inspired and ordinary‚Äîtheir aspirations are matched by insecurities, their sins by courage and kindness. It is first a story of hope, power, greed, compassion, and conscience-shocking violence from the world‚Äôs most neglected patch of territory. But it is also a story about the best and worst of America: both our big-hearted ideals and our difficult reckoning with the limits of American power amid a world in disarray.