5,079. 5/16/2003

“The Bush Administration has paid a double penalty for excluding the UN from any real power in Iraq. The first penalty from freezing out the UN is the loss of expertise. No other body has as much experience as the UN in the management of nations after a conflict. …No UN official would have taken the bizarre decision summarily to disband the Iraqi army. Rule number one of post-conflict management is that you keep every military formation in barracks so you know where they are until you have a proper demobilization scheme in place. Instead, [on May 16, 2003, Director of Reconstruction] Paul Bremer dispersed four hundred thousand men across the towns and villages of Iraq with no job to go to and no recent training other than how to wield firearms and plant explosives.”

 – Robin Cook, The Point of Departure, Page 330

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