The Secret Way to War
The Downing Street Memo And the Iraq War's Buried History
Paperback ISBN: 1590172078
At the beginning of May 2005, just before the British elections, the London Times published the so-called Downing Street memo, the leaked secret minutes of a July 2002 meeting of senior British foreign policy and security officials. The memo suggested that eight months before the invasion of Iraq, long before weapons inspections resumed, President Bush had already decided on war and to justify it by Iraq’s weapons of mass destruction and links to terrorists, that the “intelligence and facts were being fixed around the policy,” that the US wanted to avoid consulting the UN, and that few plans were being made for the aftermath of war. Largely ignored in the US press for weeks afterward, the memo was finally published, with an extensive commentary by Mark Danner, in The New York Review. Danner wrote two follow-up pieces about the significance of the memo, showing how it proves that Bush had decided to invade Iraq much earlier than he admitted and only agreed to weapons inspections not to avoid war but in the expectation that the Iraqis would invite it by refusing to cooperate. Most important, Danner argues that in the face of such clear evidence of deception, the press, public, and Congress still have not held the administration responsible. The Secret Way to War beings together Mark Danner’s strongly argued analysis of the Downing Street Memo, along with the text of the memo itself and seven other leaked British documents that show Tony Blair’s government struggling to find legal and political rationales and strategies to support regime change in Iraq.
The Free Women of Petersburg
Status and Culture in a Southern Town, 1784-1860
Paperback ISBN: 0393952649
In this book, which has important implications for our vision of thefemale past, Suzanne Lebsock examines the question, Did the position ofwomen in America deteriorate or improve in the first half of thenineteenth century?
The Life of a Lesbian Nun in Renaissance Italy
Paperback ISBN: 0195042255
The discovery of the fascinating and richly documented story of Sister Benedetta Carlini, Abbess of the Convent of the Mother of God, by Judith C. Brown was an event of major historical importance. Not only is the story revealed in Immodest Acts that of the rise and fall of a powerful woman in a church community and a record of the life of a religious visionary, it is also the earliest documentation of lesbianism in modern Western history. Born of well-to-do parents, Benedetta Carlini entered the convent at the age of nine. At twenty-three, she began to have visions of both a religious and erotic nature. Benedetta was elected abbess due largely to these visions, but later aroused suspicions by claiming to have had supernatural contacts with Christ. During the course of an investigation, church authorities not only found that she had faked her visions and stigmata, but uncovered evidence of a lesbian affair with another nun, Bartolomeo. The story of the relationship between the two nuns and of Benedetta's fall from an abbess to an outcast is revealed in surprisingly candid archival documents and retold here with a fine sense of drama.