The Corner


Most of the e-mails are running against him, although not all. A couple representative samples.


Hi Rich,

If Rumsfeld’s approach is to train the Iraqi’s and then let them “sink or swim”, how can Bush keep him as Secretary of Defense?  Bush has clearly signaled that “sinking” is not an option.  Bush says we will stay in Iraq until victory is achieved.  I have yet to hear him define what he means by victory.  What a mess.   Bush said during his first campaign that he doesn’t do nation building.  That sure was an understatement.


Mr. Lowry: 

I assume your reference to “an admirable Rumsfeld moment” was sarcastic in response to Will’s approval of the statement:  ‘”Clear, we’re doing. It’s up to the Iraqis to hold. And the State Department’s got to work with somebody on the build.”’  However, the most significant implication of that particular statement is not what it says about Rumsfeld’s policy (or lack thereof), but rather it’s his sheer nerve and hypocrisy.

One of the central charges against Rumsfeld has been that he shoved the State Department aside at every bureaucratic turn so the Pentagon would have primary jurisdiction over post-war rebuilding.  Then his “vision” was to either neglect it or ad hoc it to the point of Fiasco (all in the name of leaving it to the Iraqis, I guess).  But late in the game he could say with a straight face that the “build” wasn’t happening because the State Department wasn’t working with anybody?  As if Rumsfeld hadn’t been fighting State’s every attempt to work with everybody, somebody, anybody from Day One? 


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