Al-Harab Al-Iraqia Al-Irania: Mozakerat Moqatel (The Iraq-Iran War 1980-1988: Memoirs of a Fighter), by: Nizar al-Khazraji, ACRPS: Doha, 2014. 638pp.
The Arab Centre for Research and Policy Studies (ACRPS) has just released the memoir of former Iraqi chief-of-staff General Nizar Al-Khazraji, who played a crucial role during the eight years of the Iran-Iraq war.
According to the ACRPS press release, The Iraq-Iran War: Memoirs of a Fighter records the role of one of contemporary Iraq’s most significant military officers in a conflict that continues to shape the region. Khazraji’s memoirs, totaling 638 pages, are the first record of a senior-ranking Iraqi officer’s participation in the Iran-Iraq War to be made public.
Following an introduction by ACRPS researcher and former Iraqi naval officer Dr. Abdulwahab Al-Qassab, the book turns to Khazraji’s early life and upbringing in a military family in Mosul and then continues by covering his military career, which began in 1973.
Khazraji covers the entire period of the war in meticulous detail, beginning with its outbreak in 1980 and ending with the ceasefire in 1988.
Over the eight years of the war, the author went from being the commander of an infantry unit to becoming Iraq's highest-ranking military officer. Khazraji and other Iraqi officers were convinced that what began as a series of border skirmishes would escalate into a full-fledged conflict – and they were proven right.
With the forcefulness and conviction of a frontline commander, he argued passionately about the preparedness of units tasked with internal security in the north of the country, but his pleas fell on deaf ears.