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3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 3.00 (124 ratings) (rate this audio book) Author: Kofi Annan Narrator: Dominic Hoffman Publisher: Penguin Random House Format: Unabridged Audiobook Delivery: Instant Download Audio Length: Release Date:
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A candid memoir of global statecraft during one of the most consequential eras of recent history

Interventions is the inside story of a world at the brink. After forty years of service in the United Nations, former Secretary-General Kofi Annan shares his unique perspective of the terrorist attacks of September 11; the American invasions of Iraq and Afghanistan; the wars among Israel, Hezbollah, and Lebanon; the humanitarian tragedies of Somalia, Rwanda, and Bosnia; and the geopolitical transformations following the Cold War. With eloquence and unprecedented candor, Annan finally reveals his unique role and unparalleled perspective on decades of global politics.

The first sub-Saharan African national to hold the position of secretary-general, Annan has led an incredible life, an amazing story in its own right. Annan’s idealism and personal politics were forged in the Ghana independence movements of his adolescence, when all of Africa seemed to be waking from centuries of imperial slumber. Schooled in Minnesota, Massachusetts, and Europe, Annan ultimately joined the United Nations in Geneva as the lowest level civil servant in the still young organization. Yet Annan rose rapidly through the ranks, and by the end of the Cold War he was prominently placed in the rapidly changing department of peacekeeping.

As Annan shows the successes of the United Nations around the world, he also reveals the organization’s missed opportunities and ongoing challenges—thwarted actions in the Rwanda genocide, continuing violence between Israelis and Palestinians, the endurance of endemic poverty, and much more. Yet Annan’s great strength in this book is his ability to embed these tragedies within the context of global politics; demonstrating how, time and again, the nations of the world have retreated from the UN’s radical mandate. Ultimately, Annan shows readers a world in which solutions are always available, in which all we lack is the will and courage to see them through.

A personal biography of global statecraft, Annan’s Interventions is as much a memoir as it is a guide to world order—past, present, and future.

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Quotes & Awards

  • “Kofi Annan has been a powerful voice for the poor and a tireless advocate for peace. As a catalyst for international security and human rights, Annan reminds us that we, as the global community, are more alike than different. His life’s work demonstrates what is possible when we focus on the universal values of equality, tolerance, and human dignity.”

    Bill Gates

  • “In this thought-provoking new memoir, Kofi Annan describes the peaceful and more equitable world that is within our grasp, and offers his candid perspective on the challenges we must overcome to get there. Interventions is a powerful reminder that the United Nations still matters—and must continue to matter if we want our new century to be more free, peaceful, and prosperous than the last.”

    President Bill Clinton

  • “Written as part autobiography, part history lesson, [Interventions] is infused with Mr. Annan’s accounts of private encounters with world leaders.”

    New York Times

  • “A good, lucid book by a wise and compassionate man who, despite having spent much of his life in the political stratosphere, never loses sight of the plight of the little man.”

    Telegraph (London)

  • “[An] interesting memoir…The accounts related by Annan…are worth every minute spent reading them. Nobody alive can quite match what he has heard and seen…With his book as his legacy, perhaps he will inspire younger individuals to make inroads against incredible cruelty around the world.”

    Christian Science Monitor

  • “Frank and politically insightful…Avoiding the nebulous rhetoric of many political memoirs, Annan instead provides a peacemaker’s invaluable perspective on those crises as well as insight into the daunting challenges facing international diplomats in today’s strife-ridden world.”


  • A 2012 Washington Post Best Book for Nonfiction

Listener Opinions

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 by Andre Campbell | 11/30/2013

    " It's sad to see how powerful countries ignore the poor and helpless. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 by Tim | 9/16/2013

    " An enjoyable and easy-to-read overview of Mr. Annan's time as Secretary-General of the UN. Offers a good perspective on the evolution of academic logic legitimizing intervention and peacekeeping. "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 by Lydia | 8/14/2013

    " This man was born with ten times the amount of patience, open-mindedness, intellect and energy than anyone else. A great memoir about the most complex and terrible conflicts of the last two decades and Kofi Annan's unrivalled dedication to peace. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 by Casey | 8/12/2013

    " Good for a memoir. I had hoped for less of a history lesson, but interesting none the less. "

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