Monday, June 27, 2005

Arrogant, Irritable, Stubborn and Adamant

I watched part of Rumsfeld's appearance yesterday on NBC's Meet the Press. He was arrogant, irritable, obfuscating, stubborn and adamant about the correctness of his views and actions. So yes, he was the same Donald we've all come to know and resent.

Some people and things don't change. Donald Rumsfeld is one of them.

He should've been gone a year ago. Actually, two years ago. That's painfully obvious. Deadly obvious to the families of slain and maimed soldiers.
From the Center for American Progress....

Prior to the war against Iraq, the Bush administration claimed that the conflict would be short and inexpensive. Over two years later, the U.S. troops have sacrificed over 1,700 lives, U.S. taxpayers have spent over $200 billion on the war, and Secretary of Defense Donald Rumsfeld, appearing on three Sunday morning talk shows this weekend, claims no mistakes have been made.

The lead architect of the failed Iraq policy stubbornly refused to admit that a change of course was needed. If we are to make any progress in this disastrous situation, President Bush needs to fire Rumsfeld and replace him with someone who has clear ideas about an end state for Iraq.

Rumsfeld misled Americans about the situation facing our troops going into the war. On Fox News Sunday, host Chris Wallace confronted Rumsfeld with the accurate criticism he has offered much too rosy a picture about how the conflict would turn out, leaving most Americans unprepared for the violence that has resulted. Rumsfeld responded to the criticism by saying: "That's false ... I have been very balanced and measured." Fareed Zakaria, commenting on ABC's This Week, said, "On Iraq, Secretary Rumsfeld has been more Orwellian, not truthful." Conservative columnist Bill Kristol stated the case against Rumsfeld most succinctly: "These soldiers deserve a better defense secretary than the one we have."

His incompetence means our troops could be stuck in a no-win situation for more than a decade. Rumsfeld initially characterized Iraqi insurgents as “dead-enders,” a gross miscalculation that has limited our ability to stabilize post-Saddam Iraq. Having failed to put enough troops on the ground to do the job right in the first place, Rumsfeld bluntly admitted this weekend that the Iraqi insurgency could go on for 12 years. Unfortunately for our troops, Secretary Rumsfeld’s candor comes too late.

Nothing will change in Iraq until the chief architect of the war is removed. Secretary Rumsfeld has offered his resignation twice before in response to valid criticism of his mismanagement and poor planning. It’s time for President Bush to take him up on the offer. Rumsfeld is the brains behind the failed war in Iraq, and nothing will improve there until he is replaced by someone with clear ideas about a successful end state.

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