Thursday, February 05, 2009

Hide and Seek: The Search for Truth in Iraq

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.

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.
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.

Other variations:

This one looked a little too, Five Hundred Twenty-Five Thousand, Six Hundred WMD-ish.


Ian Shimkoviak said...

very nice. I like the evolution of the type and it's final shrouded feel...

Ian Shimkoviak said...

I also like in the detailed shot that you can see the little words WMD forming the letters. You can't really see it on the small screen shots...

Anonymous said...

Ha. . . . in daylights, in sunsets, in midnights, in cups of coffee. This cover is really perfect Henry. It sings! (but not that tune).