This is an extraordinarily important moment for the United Nations.
Before attention is lost in the controversies over the war itself and in the
challenges of its aftermath, the UN must capture, clarify, and publicize
the record of international inspections in Iraq: for itself, for member
governments, and for the public. Was the process encompassing the UN
Special Commission (UNSCOM), the International Atomic Energy
Agency (IAEA), and the UN Monitoring, Verification and Inspection
Commission (UNMOVIC) from 1991 to 2003 a success? Or was it the
bumbling embarrassment, the “sham,” portrayed by top U.S. officials
and still understood that way by the American public—and perhaps by
the public elsewhere?
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