Disarming Iraq by Hans Blix

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The war against Iraq divided opinion throughout the world and generated a maelstrom of spin and counterspin. The man at the eye of the storm, and arguably the only key player to emerge from it with his integrity intact, was Hans Blix, head of the UN weapons inspection team.

This is Dr. Blix’s account of what really happened during the months leading up to the declaration of war in March 2003. In riveting descriptions of his meetings with Tony Blair, Jacques Chirac, Colin Powell, Condoleezza Rice, and Kofi Annan, he conveys the frustrations, the tensions, the pressure and the drama as the clock ticked toward the fateful hour. In the process, he asks the vital questions about the war: Was it inevitable? Why couldn’t the U.S. and UK get the backing of the other member states of the UN Security Council? Did Iraq have weapons of mass destruction? What does the situation in Iraq teach us about the propriety and efficacy of policies of preemptive attack and unilateral action?

Free of the agendas of politicians and ideologues, Blix is the plainspoken, measured voice of reason in the cacophony of debate about Iraq. His assessment of what happened is invaluable in trying to understand both what brought us to the present state of affairs and what we can learn as we try to move toward peace and security in the world after Iraq.

From the Hardcover edition.

About Hans Blix

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Hans Blix was the director general of the International Atomic Energy Agency from 1981 to 1997 and was a member of Sweden’s delegation to the United Nations from 1961 to 1981. From 2000 to 2003, he was the executive director of the United Nations Monitoring, Verification, and Inspection Commission (UNMOVIC), supervising international inspections for weapons of mass destruction in Iraq until the inspections were suspended in March 2003. Blix has been named chairman of the newly formed International Commission on Weapons of Mass Destruction, which began its work in January 2004. He lives in Sweden.
Published March 9, 2004 by Pantheon. 304 pages
Genres: History, Political & Social Sciences, War, Travel, Professional & Technical. Non-fiction

Unrated Critic Reviews for Disarming Iraq

The Guardian

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Disarming Iraq by Hans Blix Bloomsbury, £16.99, pp285 Last year, Hans Blix appeared to hold the fate of the world in his capable hands.

Mar 14 2004 | Read Full Review of Disarming Iraq

The Guardian

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Disarming Iraq: The Search for Weapons of Mass Destruction by Hans Blix 289pp, Bloomsbury, £16.99 The Anglo-American invasion of Iraq a year ago risks turning into the catastrophe of our era, a sort of Suez, Algeria and Vietnam rolled into one.

Mar 20 2004 | Read Full Review of Disarming Iraq

AV Club

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(Or, as Blix wonders elsewhere, "Who would attach the presumption of innocence to the regime of Saddam Hussein?") In Blix's mind, the pre-war military buildup had softened the Iraqis enough to allow UNMOVIC the access it needed, though he was wary of the "cat-and-mouse" games played by its offi...

Apr 12 2004 | Read Full Review of Disarming Iraq

American Diplomacy

He also agrees that Iraq did not act to dispel reasonable doubts when it re-submitted the same 12,000 pages for its initial declaration or when it made further protestations that it had disposed of all of its WMD stockpiles.Just as Blix outlines what the U.S. and UK could have done to avoid war b...

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