John Keegan, whom the New York Review of Books calls "the best historian of our day", now brings his extraordinary expertise to bear on perhaps the most controversial war of our time. In exclusive interviews with Secretary of Defense Donald Rumsfeld and General Tommy Franks, John Keegan has gathered information about the war that adds immeasurably to our grasp of its causes, complications, costs, and consequences.
Keegan probes the reasons for the invasion; he delineates the strategy of the American and British forces in capturing Baghdad; he examines the quick victory over the Republican Guard and the more tenacious and deadly opposition that has taken its place. He analyzes the intelligence information with which the Bush and Blair administrations convinced their respective governments of the need to go to war and which has since been strongly challenged in both countries. And he makes clear that despite the uncertainty about weapons of mass destruction, regime change, and the use and misuse of intelligence, the war in Iraq is an undeniably formidable display of American power.
The Iraq War is authoritative, timely, and vitally important to our understanding of a conflict whose ramifications are as yet unknown.
©2004 John Keegan; (P)2004 Blackstone Audiobooks
"Essential reading for understanding the ongoing conflict." (Booklist)
This was a nice, brief overview of what has transpired so far in the Battle of Iraq. It starts with a general review of the middle-eastern region, not too detailed but a bit tedious nonetheless trying to follow who took over and was then killed by whom and so on and on; then it goes into a not too detailed personal history of the big dirtbag himself, Saddam Hussein (who revered Stalin), and his path of thuggery and murder, and ultimate grabbing of power. Then the battle itself is related, all the way into Baghdad, and how this campaign differed from the Gulf War of 1991. Schwarzkopf is compared to Franks.
A couple of events after that point are discussed, e.g. the British scientist-scholar who ultimately committed suicide after revealing that he had "sexed up" some intelligence reports.
Since you're probably wondering: Keegan makes it clear that he supports the war, though if I recall correctly, not until the end of the book, so the bulk of the book is not explicitly pro-war, it's just a chronological recounting of events.
It is tough to confidently take a solid stance recent developments if you aren't certain of all the details. This book helped me fill in all the gaps in my learning of the events that lead us to where we are today, from the Ottoman Empire to Saddam Hussein. This is not an opinion book but one of facts; facts crucial in understanding current events.
I'm a manager of a lawncare crew that listens to audio books when feasible. I have 2 years of business and 3 towards a history degree.
A great read of the Iraq War from a British perspective.
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