Fiasco - The American Military Adventure in Iraq

PUBLISHED : Sunday, 19 August, 2007, 12:00am
UPDATED : Sunday, 19 August, 2007, 12:00am

Fiasco - The American Military Adventure in Iraq


by Thomas E. Ricks


Penguin, HK$128


'Fiasco' pretty much sums it all up, and in his April 2007 postscript to this paperback edition, Thomas Ricks confesses that his hopes for lesson-learning expressed in last year's hardback of Fiasco - The American Military Adventure in Iraq were unfounded. Iraq is going from bad to worse. As senior Pentagon correspondent for The Washington Post, Ricks has the credibility and contacts to tell the inside story. This is about how the Bush administration, generally, and former defence secretary Donald Rumsfeld, his deputy Paul Wolfowitz, and Vice President Dick Cheney, specifically, manipulated Congress and a weak military command in the wake of September 11 to achieve - what? Read this book alongside James Risen's State of War on the failure of the CIA, and volume three of State of Denial, Bob Woodward's account of a failed presidency. All itemise the idiocy in meticulous detail. Ricks' target is a military that tried so hard to avoid another Vietnam it created just that. But still, Fiasco and the others fail to explain why so many mistakes were made and why they continue to be made. Countless thousands of lives and hundreds of billions of dollars in global capital are being squandered. To what end?