‘This is an outstanding book…’ -Nassim Nicholas Taleb

“This is an outstanding book on the side effects of interventionism, written in extremely elegant prose and with maximum clarity. It documents how people find arguments couched in moralistic terms to intervene in complex systems they don’t understand. These interventions trigger endless chains of the unintended consequences – consequences for the victims, but none for the interventionists, allowing them to repeat the mistakes again and again. Puri, as an insider, outlines the principles and legal mechanisms, then runs through the events of the past few years since the Iraq invasion: all of his chapters are models of concision, presenting the story of Ukraine, Syria, Libya and Yemen among others, as standalone briefings to the uninitiated.  It was high time that somebody in the international affairs approached the problem of ‘iatrogenics’, that is, harm done by the healer.   This book should be mandatory reading for every student and practitioner of foreign affairs.”  

Nassim Nicholas Taleb, risk specialist and bestselling author of The Black Swan and Antifragile

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