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Posted on May 4, 2006
Rumsfeld forum

Secretary of Defense Donald Rumsfeld was harshly grilled at a live, televised public forum May 4.

Ray McGovern, a retired 27-year veteran of the CIA, leaves Donald Rumsfeld sputtering as he pulls apart the secretary of defense’s flawed rationale for the Iraq war—on live television.

  • Video

  • Bio of McGovern

  • Crooks and Liars:

    Ray McGovern, who was in the CIA for twenty seven years, asked him why he lied about the run-up to the Iraq war. Rumsfeld then proceeded to lie to McGovern to cover up his earlier statements about WMD’s being in Iraq. He also tries to use the troops in his defense, a terrible strategy, but not uncommon unfortunately. Notice, at the end of the clip, Ray gets vilified for asking Rumsfeld some pointed questions. We can’t have that, no-no-no.

    Rumsfeld: appears that there were not weapons of mass destruction there.

    McGovern: You said you knew where they were.

    Rumsfeld: I did not. I said I knew where suspect sites were and…

    McGovern: You said you knew where they were. Tikrit, Baghdad, northeast, south, west of there. Those are your words.

    Rumsfeld: My words-my words were that-no-no, wait a minute—wait a minute. Let him stay one second. Just a second….

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    By Hilding Lindquist, May 5, 2006 at 10:50 pm Link to this comment
    (Unregistered commenter)

    This is getting so good I can hardly stand it! Read Ray McGovern’s bio at:

    (Same link as in home page lead.)

    Anyway, it reads:

    “The department Ray heads at the [Servant Leadership] School deals with the biblical injunction to “speak truth to power,” and this, together with his experience in intelligence analysis, accounts for his various writings and media appearances over the past year.  His focus dovetails nicely with the passage carved into the marble entrance to CIA Headquarters:  `You will know the truth, and the truth will set you free`—the ethic mandating that CIA analysts were to `tell it like it is` without fear or favor.”

    Is our nation great or what! Where else would we get a Ray McGovern? This man is a hero!

    Let’s (we the people) take our nation back from the bozo’s in the Bush Adminsitration.

    Report this

    By Connie Julian, May 5, 2006 at 5:40 pm Link to this comment
    (Unregistered commenter)

    FYI, some of the activists disrupting the Rumsfeld speech in Atlanta were from World Can’t Wait-Drive Out the Bush Regime, a national organization that is aiming to mobilize the millions who hate Bush into a force that can actually drive out this regime and reverse this terrible course.
    Ray McGovern offered more this morning on Democracy Now on what World Can’t Wait did in Atlanta at the Rumsfeld event:

    Ray: You know, it’s really interesting that when I walked into the place, I wrangled a ticket very surreptitiously. I was met with this little blurb on Donald Rumsfeld, and as I read it, I had to chuckle. It says, “There’s going to be a question-and-answer period, but please adhere to these guidelines. Refrain from using the word ‘lie’ in relation to the war in Iraq. Do not question the secretary’s personal responsibility for torture. And please don’t discuss first use of nuclear weapons against Iran. If you violate these guidelines, you’ll be immediately removed from the auditorium, flown to an undesignated prison location somewhere in Eastern Europe and tortured. Thank you for your cooperation. The World Can’t Wait.” A wonderful, wonderful group. Those were the folks that spoke up and tried to brace Donald Rumsfeld with the lies and their charges of him being—and he is, arguably—a war criminal. And we shouldn’t shy away from saying that.”

    For more on what happened in Atlanta, go to:

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    By Mike Corbeil, May 5, 2006 at 3:49 pm Link to this comment
    (Unregistered commenter)

    There are more ways than only one for proving that GWB et al, indeed including Rumsfeld, had LIED about the WMD, and much more.

    One is the fact that it was clearly obvious that the UN weapons inspections were progressing successfully, and this meant that the war could not be justifiably launched (officially that is, given that it unofficially did begin during spring 2002), because WMD was the or one of the main claims GWB et al said justified war on Iraq.  I don’t recall the number of sites that GWB et al sent the weapons inspectors to and only to prove that yet again there were no signs of WMD, but recently enough read an article in which something like around 700 different locations in Iraq had been inspected.  That seems like very high to me, if it’s only with regards to the late 2002 and early 2003 inspections, vs those and the ones performed during the 1990s, but the figure I read (not sure which article though) was around 700.

    Rumsfeld, just like the rest of GWB et al, he lied alright, and he was reported as having disbanded CIA analysts who were in charge of keeping him properly informed, replacing them, because they refused to provide him with information he demanded but which the CIA analysts said they could and would not support for it was too weak, unproven, well, replacing them with the OSP, a team of what I believe to recall was of rather unqualified people but who were constant “yes-men” for Rummy et al.

    Remember Colin Powell’s big LIE at the UN, in front of the UNGA I believe it was, when he tried to pretend, or did pretend that sat. photos of the exterior shells of trailers were WMD labs, showing absolutely nothing of any traces of WMD-anything on the outside, and nothing of the inside?  Remember that none of the members of GWB et al opposed this statement by Powell, who was obviously in their service in this presentation of his, and this means Rumsfeld also went along with the clearly bogus claim therein presented to the international community, treating that many of us humans as if we’re all stupid enough to believe such bogus claims?


    What that illustrates is not necessarily that Rumsfeld lied but that even if he hadn’t, which he did, but let’s just that even if he hadn’t, then it is very obvious that he certainly had the intention of working to help DECEIVE Americans, and the whole international community, and that is to LIE.  For people in such positions to participate in merely defending what are very obviously lies is to lie, as far as I’m concerned anyway.

    It all illustrates that indeed these people LIED, en masse too, that they are guilty of extreme contempt of law and its processes, and these on top of being extreme war criminals, definitely triable and convictable like as per Nuremberg.

    Not long ago, Paul Krugman produced an article in which he argues that the extreme crimes of Bush et al are so well known that both Bush and Cheney are legally and immediately convictable to life a-la hard-time, like chain gang style, and without any need for trial by jury.  I don’t know if that’s indeed legally true, but also don’t believe that Krugman would state this unless he knew it was true, he says that he knows first-hand because his career has involved this kind of investigative or legal matter, and it all makes more than enough sound sense to me.

    “Attack Iran? Yes He Would”, by Paul Krugman, NYT, April 10, 2006,

    And Rumsfeld, as far as I’m concerned again, he’s rather just as guilty as Bush and Cheney.  Even if their political positions are in some ways treated as associated with greater responsibility, he’s nevertheless in a very high and important, and dangerous political role, and he’s certainly no innocent person.  Plus he’s guilty for far more than criminally replacing the CIA with the OSP, lying, going along with what were obviously, enough anyway, lies or at best gross distortions of truths, pushing for the hellish war on Iraq, etc., etc., etc.  So I’ll differ from Krugman in this sense, that not only Bush and Cheney, but also Rumsfeld should be and are immediately convictable to life on the rocks.

    Nope, there is no credible doubt that GWB, Cheney, Rumsfeld, ..., and also Powell are all guilty of extreme war crimes, and it’s unfortunate for Powell for he was at least the sanest member of the administration, just that he has this regular flaw that continuously pops up, again and again, to fold in and do as told by his superior politicians, schmucks in expensive suits, ....

    “We don’t do body/casualty counts”, remember that statement from a high-ranking US military official or commander in Iraq, in this present war there?  That is another illustration proving INTENT to LIE, etc.  And given the intent is enforced, we therefore have actual LYING. 

    (As it is, we’re looking at around 300,000, no longer 100,000 but around 300,000 Iraqi casualties, by far most civilians, non-combatants, and women and children, though I suppose also teens.  This is a genocidal, as well as ecocidal or simply omnicidal war of aggression, but the genocidal total, it’s not going to be over or cease climbing when the US et al pull out of Iraq, for which there is no near schedule or time set, or no time set at all, really, regardless of whether it’s near or far.  The total is going to continue to climb and horribly so for decades or rather generations of Iraqis to come, and we already know the statistics for the roughly 13 years between the end of GHWB’s war of entirely criminal aggression and hypocrisy on Iraq, 1990-91, from which we can easily arrive at the understanding that the total toll is going to be huge.)

    From what I’ve gathered, they have rendered much of Iraq a quite permanent and toxic death valley, so bad that perhaps the very best thing for Iraqis, now, would be to get some kind of arrangement with the international community to get Iraqis out of Iraq, relocated, for the future is death in Iraq.

    I have’t read the article yet but enough to see that it states that GWB et al don’t plan on permanently basing people in the permanent facilities they’ve been constructing and merging in Iraq, that these will be permanent and permanently under US control, but that people wouldn’t be permanently place there.  It causes me to question why, if it’s related to the fact that they’ve rendered Iraq such a toxic place, for I otherwise don’t understand why they wouldn’t have at least a considerable number of people permanently, enough, long-term anyway, based and “working” (operating anyway) there.  If yes, then it tells me what is believed by these people to be in store for Iraqis who will remain there.

    And that’s just more LIES from these people, hooligans, and oligarchs.  (It’s a real oligarchy they have going on, for GWB is not dictating solely of his own doing, is surely manipulated in some respects, and therefore is not really dictator, for the situation seems far more of the worse order, in this case it’s worse anyway, known as oligarchy.  If Bush was ruling alone, with nothing more than using some others as advisers but while he’d always be responsible for the decisions made, then he’d be dictator, but I doubt he rules alone.)

    LIES.  We’ve been flooded with them.  We have them with respect to the war on the Taliban, the one on Iraqis, the one on Haitians, the secret, covert, black ops war on the indigenous and poor of Colombia, etc., as well as the war on Americans’ rights and laws, and elections, while also more fully so, given there have been plenty of people wrongfully convicted and sentenced to prison terms.

    They’re broadly, pathological liars, and Rumsfeld cannot credibly argue that he did not lie and just like Ray McGovern has now stated, as well as much more.

    There’s rather only one sole thing that needs to happen now and it is that Bush, Cheney, Rumsfeld, and other members, present and former, of this administration to be impeached, convicted, and sentenced to life on the rocks, a-la chain gang style, like Krugman well says or argues.  We don’t need trials, for the crimes are more than adequately known.

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    By rex, May 5, 2006 at 3:18 pm Link to this comment
    (Unregistered commenter)

    I noticed Rumsfeld once again blamed the CIA for “bad intelligence” completely ignoring the fact that his own Defense Department gets 80 percent of the intelligence budget and his own National Ground Intelligence Center, not the CIA, had the responsibility for detecting, tracking and targeting deployed WMDs in Iraq if they ever actually existed.
    If NGIC could not locate a single WMD target
    in all of Iraq we should not have had a war regardless of what the CIA analysts concluded in the National Intelligence Estimate.
    Rumsfeld’s entire “military transformation” program is built on the “realtime battlefield awareness and responsive warfare” concept so blaming the CIA for his ignorance of the very existence, let alone location, of deployed battlefield weapons of mass destruction in the middle of a war undermines his whole military philosophy and is enough reason in itself for him to resign.

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    By Thaddeus Hoffmeister, May 5, 2006 at 2:59 pm Link to this comment
    (Unregistered commenter)

    Whether you are for or against the war in Iraq, it should be pretty clear by now that Rumsfeld has to go. Not because of his flawed invasion plans (too few troops); role in Abu Grahib; failure to capture Osama Bin Laden; premature demobilization of the Iraqi Army; inability to stabilize Iraq; or callous statements toward young service members, but rather for a much more fundamental reason. Rumsfeld no longer has the confidence of those whom he leads. The so-called “general’s revolt,” in which 6 generals called for Rumsfeld’s resignation, brought ...

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    By mutterhals, May 5, 2006 at 7:37 am Link to this comment
    (Unregistered commenter)

    I saw this story covered a few times on the news and they omitted this exchange. All the stories I saw claim Rumsfeld “held his own” when faced with protesters. Maybe that’s because they were dragged out of the room the minute they opened their mouths…

    Report this

    By osage, May 5, 2006 at 6:46 am Link to this comment
    (Unregistered commenter)

    When an honest man confronts a dishonest one with the truth, the dishonest man can either lie and demonstrate his dishonesty or admit he lied.  Mr. Rumsfeld tried to lie by denying that he’d said that he knew where the WMDs were.  When Mr. McGovern quoted what Mr. Rumsfeld had in fact said, Mr. Rumsfeld was speechless in the face of the futility of getting away with a lie.  The fact that Mr. Rumsfeld is also frequently wrong and an incompetent military strategist, left him vulnerable to the truth of his lie.  Truth and honesty are not allies of the Bush adminstration.

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    By Hilding Lindquist, May 5, 2006 at 4:33 am Link to this comment
    (Unregistered commenter)

    And this morning I am listening to MSM apologists for Rumsfeld explaining that while “technically” he said the evidence was “bulletproof”, he really was only quoting others who had provided him with the information ... so the big guy wasn’t really, really lying to us.

    And the Bush-Cheney-Rumfeld-Rice-et al cabal continue to use the “big lie” to stay in power. Didn’t we learn ANYTHING from Hitler’s rise to power? Have the Strausian Neocons effectively mirrored the Nazi Party? What on earth are we allowing to take place “in our name”?

    If we the people don’t take our government back from these bozos ...

    Pogo: “We have met the enemy and he is us.”…..22

    Report this

    By Druthers, May 5, 2006 at 12:21 am Link to this comment
    (Unregistered commenter)

    He did what the press should have been doing since 2000—Make them answer questions or stay in their bunkers.
    But as the Sopranos would say, “You live with the government you have not the government you want.”

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