US in Iraq now reading up on T E Lawrence's prescient warnings

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No wonder Seven Pillars of Wisdom - indeed, all of T E Lawrence's work - now tops the reading list of almost every senior US officer in Iraq. Long after his legend was established in Arabia and Damascus and at the Versailles Treaty negotiations - almost 90 years after he realised that his promises to his Arab allies were to be broken by Britain's adherence to the Balfour Declaration - Lawrence's wisdom is now serving to guide (and no doubt misguide) the Americans, who have walked into the hell-disaster of Iraq with no idea of how to retreat. If only, I say to myself each time I arrive in Baghdad, the Americans had read Lawrence before they invaded.

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