6,023. 7/13/2004

Former Ambassador and Senior Member of the Office of Reconstruction and Humanitarian Assistance (OHRA) Robin Raphel spoke about the OHRA’s role in Iraq in an interview with Charles Kennedy on July 13, 2004. ” ‘It was supposed to be a [Iraqi National Congress leader Ahmed] Chalabi-centered effort with the five other [Iraqi political faction] parties… It was very obvious to me that we could not run a country we did not understand. We were not prepared. We went too soon. We should have waited until we built an international coalition.’ The White House had spurned the United Nations, but Raphel jested darkly to her colleagues that the United States would be on its knees in a week begging for help from the world body.”

 – Michael R. Gordon and Bernard E. Trainor, Cobra II, Pages 539-540

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