by Charles Duelfer
Art Director: Pete Garceau // PublicAffairs
Charles Duelfer is one of the most senior intelligence officers with on the ground experience to have worked in Iraq, before, during and after the Gulf War. He was asked by President Bush to investigate and report on why there were no weapons of mass destruction in Iraq, and his report was the first to provide official confirmation of the absence of WMD and an account for why so many people had believed they existed. (To see how the report was received – it was front page news – see Dana Priest’s Washington Post verdict) Duelfer was also entrusted with supervising the interrogation of Saddam Hussein after his capture. He has been at the heart of US intelligence’s dealing with Iraq since 1993, and he reported personally to George Tenet.We searched high and low for Weapons of Mass Destruction (WMD) and never found them. To depict a bomb or anything concrete on the cover that suggested what they were looking for would contradict the book. I thought a good approach was to make it all type and have the title created by the idea of what they were looking for. Obsessively blinded by their search, WMD is always right in front of their eyes and they see it when it doesn't exist. I gave it a stenciled / spray paint look to suggest the military.
This book is nothing less that the search for truth amid the many deceptions in Iraq, the story of how Iraq was assessed as a threat, how Saddam responded fatefully to US demands, and how the decisions to topple the Saddam regime were implemented. No one is better able to see inside the mindsets of two administrations – the US and Iraqi – with their mismatched priorities, wounded pride and dangerous ability to bluff and counterbluff.
This one looked a little too, Five Hundred Twenty-Five Thousand, Six Hundred WMD-ish.