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Mark Mazower: The UN, 22 March 2007

The Best Intentions: Kofi Annan and the UN in the Era of American Power 
by James Traub.
Bloomsbury, 442 pp., £20, November 2006, 0 7475 8087 1
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The Parliament of Man: The United Nations and the Quest for World Government 
by Paul Kennedy.
Allen Lane, 361 pp., £25, July 2006, 0 7139 9375 8
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... the UN has acquired an unprecedented global prominence. Kofi Annan’s career, as described by James Traub in The Best Intentions: Kofi Annan and the UN in the Era of American Power, illustrates the possibilities and the pitfalls of this new world role. Having risen through the ranks to become under-secretary general for peacekeeping, Annan ...

Our Man

Perry Anderson: The Inglorious Career of Kofi Annan, 10 May 2007

The Best Intentions: Kofi Annan and the UN in the Era of American World Power 
by James Traub.
Bloomsbury, 442 pp., £20, November 2006, 0 7475 8087 1
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Kofi Annan: A Man of Peace in a World of War 
by Stanley Meisler.
Wiley, 384 pp., £19.99, January 2007, 978 0 471 78744 0
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... be very high. So, predictably enough, it has been with the United Nations. Readers approaching James Traub’s and Stanley Meisler’s books thus have reason to expect the worst. In some ways the expectation is amply fulfilled, but in others the two books – each by a journalist – cast more light on the UN than is normally allowed to fall on ...

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