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I have a venerable comrade in the foreign ministry of Australia. His name is Neil Hawkins, and he was the only non-Japanese boss that I ever had during my 27-year diplomatic career. He later became ambassador of Australia to Egypt and Saudi Arabia, but our first encounter was in postwar Baghdad in March 2004.

He was the director of development cooperation and senior adviser to the Iraqi Minister of Planning and International Cooperation at the Coalition Provisional Authority (CPA), which was virtually an occupational governing entity in Iraq established after the Iraq War of 2003 and the fall of Saddam Hussain’s Baathist Iraq.

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