Defense Secretary Donald Rumsfeld gave a couple of radio interviews today in which he talked about the increased level of violence in Iraq as it relates to the U.S. mid-term elections:
“You know, they’re very good at manipulating the American press and managing the news in a way that advantages them and tries to break the will of the American people,” Rumsfeld told Bill LuMaye during a telephone interview on WPTF in Raleigh, N.C. “And they’re good at it. They know what they’re doing. They consciously plan their attacks to achieve that end.”
Rumsfeld said the terrorists’ efforts to affect American will have shifted what he called the war on terror’s “center of gravity” away from the battlefield.
“The military always talks about the center of gravity of a conflict, and logically one would think it would be in Afghanistan or Iraq or in the struggle against the violent extremists,” he said. “But in fact, because they are so calculating in attempting to break the will and to terrorize people and to alter our behavior, the center of gravity of this conflict very much is back in the United States. And they’re very good at attempting to alter our behavior.”
He’s absolutely right about this. We saw surges of violence before the Iraqis voted in their elections, and now we’re seeing one before ours.