In 1958, Ahmad Chalabi’s wealthy Shiite family was exiled from Iraq after a revolution that ultimately put Saddam Hussein in power. The young Chalabi devoted his life to restoring his family to prominence. His first coup attempt was in 1963 at age nineteen, while on a school break from MIT. His next was aided by Iranian intelligence. But as the years passed and Saddam stayed in power, Chalabi made an audacious decision: he needed the support of both Iran and its powerful archenemy, the United States.
"This One Will Scare Your Socks Off"
For his book Arrows of the Night: Ahmad Chalabi’s Long Journey to Triumph in Iraq, Richard Bonin, a producer for CBS News’ 60 Minutes, had unprecedented access to Chalabi – conducting over 60 hours of interviews – as well as access to his family, advisors, and compound in post-war Iraq. The book has been praised as the best-researched, most readable narrative about how a small group of people caused the United States to wage a war that was unnecessary, and worse, counter-productive.