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Ear to the Ground

Rumsfeld Disowns the War

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Posted on Sep 10, 2007
Rummy and Joyce

The former defense secretary graces the pages of October’s GQ (of all places) to make some bold assertions, claiming he was not a driving force behind the Iraq war and that he warned the president of many of the problems that have come to pass.

There are many gems in the lengthy interview. Asked whether he misses the president, for example, Rumsfeld replies simply: “Um, no.”


I tell him there’s something I’ve been curious about. In the early days, before the invasion, where did Donald Rumsfeld stand, exactly? Were you one of the people driving the bus who wanted to invade Iraq, or—.

“No.” He cuts me off. “I think [Bush] was quoted in the Woodward book as saying he didn’t ask me. And that’s true.”

But surely, at some point you must have expressed your concerns.

He did. First of all, “we—without separating me from the others—we tried not to have that happen. We tried to get Saddam Hussein to adhere to the U.N. resolutions. We tried to get other countries to put diplomatic pressure on him. Even at the very end, we tried to get him to leave the country and seek safe haven elsewhere so that that”—he means the war—“wouldn’t have to happen. And before the war, I sat and—this is on the record, all of this—I sat down and handwrote fifteen, twenty, twenty-five things that could be…could go wrong, could be real problems.”

He says he will show me the memo. (And eventually, he does. It’s just as he describes it.) “I wrote down all of the things that could be problems: That we wouldn’t find weapons of mass destruction. That there’d be a Fortress Baghdad, and a lot of people would be killed. All of this ... I read it in a National Security Council meeting. Then I went back to my office—I had handwritten it—and I dictated it and added four or five things. And I think there’s probably thirty items on it. And then I sent it around to each of the members of the National Security Council, to the president and the vice president. So that all of them had in their heads the things that were difficult, problematic, worrisome, dangerous.”

And how was it received?

“Um ... ” A pause. He is carefully choosing his words. “I think it was ... appreciated by the president that I took the time to do that.”

And do you think the president—.

“Yeah, I thought he read it. Yeah.”

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By jerryd, September 11, 2007 at 2:42 pm Link to this comment
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I guess Rumsfeld is getting forgetful in his old age as I am from time to time.  He just forgot signing that letter to President Clinton in 1998 urging Clinton to attack Iraq.  Hmmmmmmmmm,  oh yes, Paul Wolfowitz signed, Richard Perle signed, Richard Armitage signed.

Seems to me all of these men served the current occupant of the Offal Office as subordinates to Rummy.

Well, it’s irrelevant now, isn’t it?  Rummy’s gone.

I read the whole article too.  If I were a betting man, I would bet that the editors of GQ won’t be getting xmas cards from the Rummys

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By jay, September 11, 2007 at 12:16 pm Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

I cant believe that this blithering idiot has the guts to blatantly lie his sorry a$$ that he had doubts about the fact throughout most of his past speeches he was just as ‘gung ho’ about the whole situation..and by the way i always had a gut feeling that this slimeball might just be one of those closet pervetic pedofiles..he certainly has that insane atmosphere and look about him just like the Idiot we have as a president.

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By jerryd, September 11, 2007 at 11:13 am Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

I know that age brings forgetfulness, at almost 70 myself, I forget things.  Like just who were the people under Rummy at Defense.  I seem to recall that Paul Wolfowitz was Deputy Secretary, and Richard Armitage and Richard Perle had positions, though I can’t recall those assignments. 

Now I suppose none of this is really relevant to anything except for the small fact that these men along with Rummy himself signed a letter to President Clinton in 1998 urging him to attack Iraq. 

PNAC still lists it on their site.

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By John, September 11, 2007 at 10:03 am Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

He doesn’t think he’s Jesus.
He think’s he is god and that’s Mary by his side.

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By QuyTran, September 11, 2007 at 9:27 am Link to this comment

This guy gets lots of germs in his mouth !

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By Mudwollow, September 11, 2007 at 9:04 am Link to this comment

What a happy looking couple. Send them to Iraq.

We can expect to see all the perpetrators of the war and vandals of our Constitution to be historically rehabilitated in the near future. Rumsfeld is a get it done kind of guy and apparently wanted to get the jump on the rewriting of his part in this hideous debacle.

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By GW=MCHammered, September 11, 2007 at 8:25 am Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

All these nuts fell from the same tree. Why’d so many fall for them?

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By Outraged, September 10, 2007 at 11:57 pm Link to this comment

I’m not sure whether he got the ass because he thinks he’s Jesus or not.

Oh yeah, that’s right it’s a donkey, so then one of the other figures in that picture must be the ass.  The one is a bimbo for sure, the one is a donkey, so…..hmmm…...

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By RAE, September 10, 2007 at 8:25 pm Link to this comment


Sorry… there ain’t going to be enough room for a photo in “Bush’s library.” I doubt the damned thing will be any larger than a phone booth - that’s about the right size for EVERYTHING HE’S EVER READ and far too large to store everything he’s written that’s worth keeping.

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By waxman, September 10, 2007 at 7:47 pm Link to this comment


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By vet240, September 10, 2007 at 4:58 pm Link to this comment

“We tried to get Saddam Hussein to adhere to the U.N. resolutions. We tried to get other countries to put diplomatic pressure on him.”

Excuse me you ignorant, arrogant, lying fool, Hussein was adhering to the U.N. resolutions and you people were told so by the leading Inspector.

“I wrote down all of the things that could be problems: That we wouldn’t find weapons of mass destruction.”

You sir are a traitor to America. You said many times that you and others even knew the general area we would find these so-called transportable chemical weapons labs and WMD’s

What your conferences were really about wasn’t should we attack Iraq. Your conferences were based on the question, “How do we cover our asses after everyone finds out we lied to Congress thereby commiting treason.

You and the rest of your scum friends, if you lived in almost any other country in the world, would already have been tried, convicted and executed for your crimes against the Nation.

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By RAE, September 10, 2007 at 3:53 pm Link to this comment

I really liked the part about the Rumsfelds being “frugal” - the Mrs. buying rugs and a mattress pad on sale at one end of the country (to save a buck or two, I assume) only to lug them across the country aboard their PRIVATE JET! As my granny used to say… “penny wise & pound foolish!” Frugal my fat ass!

If I was interviewing the “Don” I’d ask “Can you explain why you stayed with the President and actively supported his positions when you didn’t agree with much of what he was doing?”

During my 50 years in the working world I think there were at least 2 or 3 positions I INSTANTLY RESIGNED when I learned that the orginization and/or the boss were “not as advertised.” It’s called having PRINCIPLES.

What about it, Mr. Secretary? Are you devoid of principles or do you just use “situational ethics” as your compass when deciding right from wrong?

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By Michael Gass, September 10, 2007 at 3:50 pm Link to this comment

Rumsfeld wrote that we WOULDN’T find WMD’s???? And a HANDWRITTEN memo even… gee… not like that couldn’t have been done AFTER he was booted… but wait… it was RUMSFELD that said he KNEW WHERE THE WMD’S WERE IN IRAQ on national television.

Lying sack of @@@@!

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By farmertx, September 10, 2007 at 3:48 pm Link to this comment

Hell, if’n I’d a ducked (sic) things up as much as he did when he re-invented how wars will be fought, I’d put some distance ‘tween me and that ‘war’ as well.
Now, if he will just admit that he had absolutely no business thinking that he knew more about fighting wars than the military.
It’s true that he had sat in and possibly flew a Navy aircraft. And we all know the ego’s of any pilot. But that seems a far reach, especially since his service did not involve any combat. ‘Course, that experience was a lot more than what the cheerful idiot had.

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By Mariam Russell, September 10, 2007 at 3:19 pm Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

Man, When the ugliest, most stunted rats start jumping ship, you are in deep dodo, Mr B.

And they are pointing, saying “He did it. Had nothin to do with me.”

Whoa! bad times ahead, boyo.

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