Rumsfeld Rebuked By Retired Generals
Ex-Iraq Commander Calls for Resignation
By Thomas E. Ricks
Washington Post Staff Writer
Thursday, April 13, 2006; A01
The retired commander of key forces in Iraq called yesterday for Donald H. Rumsfeld to step down, joining several other former top military commanders who have harshly criticized the defense secretary’s authoritarian style for making the military’s job more difficult.
“I think we need a fresh start” at the top of the Pentagon, retired Army Maj. Gen. John Batiste, who commanded the 1st Infantry Division in Iraq in 2004-2005, said in an interview. “We need leadership up there that respects the military as they expect the military to respect them. And that leadership needs to understand teamwork.”
Batiste noted that many of his peers feel the same way. “It speaks volumes that guys like me are speaking out from retirement about the leadership climate in the Department of Defense,” he said earlier yesterday on CNN.