Rumsfeld Challenges Rice on Her ‘Tactical Errors’ Remark
The secretary of defense said the secretary of state displayed a “lack of understanding … of what warfare is about” in saying last week that the U.S. had probably made thousands of “tactical errors” in Iraq. “I don’t know what she was talking about, to be perfectly honest,” Rumsfeld continued. (Hat tip: Huff Po)
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Defense Secretary Donald H. Rumsfeld said he did not know what Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice was talking about when she said last week that the United States had made thousands of “tactical errors” in handling the war in Iraq, a statement she later said was meant figuratively.
Speaking during a radio interview on WDAY in Fargo, N.D., on Tuesday, Rumsfeld said calling changes in military tactics during the war “errors” reflects a lack of understanding of warfare. Rumsfeld defended his war plan for Iraq but added that such plans inevitably do not survive first contact with the enemy.
“Why? Because the enemy’s got a brain; the enemy watches what you do and then adjusts to that, so you have to constantly adjust and change your tactics, your techniques and your procedures,” Rumsfeld told interviewer Scott Hennen, according to a Defense Department transcript. “If someone says, well, that’s a tactical mistake, then I guess it’s a lack of understanding, at least my understanding, of what warfare is about.”
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