On June 19th, the International Peace Institute held an evening reception featuring Pulitzer Prize-winning author Samantha Power, who discussed her most recent book, Chasing the Flame: Sergio Vieira de Mello and the Fight to Save the World.
The tragic death of Sergio Vieira de Mello along with twenty-one others in the 2003 terrorist bombing of the UN headquarters in Baghdad impacted many in the international community. In her biography of Vieira de Mello, Ms. Power walks the reader through the symbolism of his professional life in relation to the high aspirations and profound dilemmas of international humanitarianism and state building. Covering his entire UN career––including time spent in conflict zones such as Lebanon, Sudan, Cambodia, Bosnia, Timor-Leste, and Kosovo––the book provided fertile grounds for discussion with the participants.
The event, hosted by IPI Vice President and Director of External Relations Warren Hoge, was the first in a new series of evening meetings at IPI called Beyond the Headlines, each featuring a leading personality invited to speak on UN issues and to engage in a robust off-the-record discussion with experts from Permanent Missions to the UN and other members of the UN community.