- Paperback: 432 pages
- Publisher: Penguin; First Printing, Underlinging edition (26 May 2005)
- Language: English
- ISBN-10: 0141020881
- ISBN-13: 978-0141020884
- Product Dimensions: 12.9 x 2.4 x 19.8 cm
- Average Customer Review: 5.0 out of 5 stars See all reviews (5 customer reviews)
- Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 475,327 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
Chain of Command Paperback – 26 May 2005
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About the Author
Thirty-five years ago, Seymour Hersh established himself at the forefront of investigative journalism with an expose of the massacre in My Lai, Vietnam, for which he won a Pulitzer Prize. Ever since, he's been a relentless thorn in the side of America's power elite, plumbing Washington back channels and the intelligence community for the stories others can't - or won't - get. In the crises that followed the September 11th attacks, Hersh found a challenge equal to his explosive energy. From the hunt for the hijackers to the dubious claims about weapons of mass destruction, Hersh delivered inspired pieces that have been met with both acclaim and outrage - including his breakthrough reporting on Abu Ghraib.
Top Customer Reviews
Hersh reveals how the usual intelligence channels of analysis were deliberately bypassed by George W. Bush's White House, so that raw (and quite often, dubious) information was `stovepiped' from highly unreliable sources, such as Ahmad Chalabi's London-based exile group, the Iraqi National Congress, directly to Secretary of Defence Donald Rumsfeld. This material, though of little credibility, meshed perfectly with the ideology of the neoconservative `crazies' that made up the inner sanctum of Bush's White House. As a consequence, ridiculous propaganda became widely disseminated, such as (amongst others) stories about Saddam Hussein's ability to active weapons of mass destruction within 45 minutes of an order being given.
Hersh details many, many other disturbing facets of the Bush administration: how the torture at Abu Ghraib was not an isolated incident perpetrated by a few rotten apples but rather part of a Rumsfeld-initiated Special-Access Program (Copper Green) to engage U.S.Read more ›
Meticulously reported, with a bloodhound's instinct for shaking out secrets, this is ultimately a depressing, but essential read. Everyone in the USA and the UK needs to know what has been and is being done in their name. At least we can't pretend nobody told us the truth - whether we listen or not seems to be another matter.
This is not a canvas on the war in Iraq. However it is a brilliant supplement for any politically interested person and it cannot help but prompt some pretty challenging questions to American policy in the Middle East.
My one critisism of the book is that it comes across as a bit of a re-hash of a series of articles in the New Yorker. As such the book is a little lacking in theme and consistency. However that does not detract from the fact that each chapter in its own right is relevant, interesting and as always, well researched.
Go for it...