'NATO should run Iraq' -- U.S. expert

Dec. 11, 2003 at 12:03 PM

WASHINGTON, Dec. 11 (UPI) -- Security in Iraq should become a NATO mission while the United Nations should run civilian affairs, a top U.S. expert advises.

Robert Hunter, the U.S. ambassador to NATO during the Clinton presidency, urged the Bush administration Thursday "to consider making Iraqi security a NATO mission and shifting civilian authority to the United Nations."

Such an arrangement, he says, "would tell the American people we were not alone" while allowing the United States to "still run the show" in Iraq, the former ambassador told the New York Council for Foreign Relations.

"It is hard to understand why the U.S. wouldn't risk going in this direction when the payoff could be so enormous in terms of having other countries there, lowering the visibility of American forces, and, hence, lowering their chances of being killed," he said.

Hunter is currently a senior adviser at the RAND Corp.in Washington.

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