Opinion

Rummy’s Gotta Go

Odds are that you are among the 60+% who disapprove of the job George W. Bush is doing in Iraq, and if that’s the case, Secretary of Defense Donald Rumsfeld has been talking shit about you to his friends at the American Legion.

You are cynical. You are morally and intellectually confused. Your type enabled Nazis during World War II, and you wish to appease Islamofascist extremists.

If we were to disregard, for a moment, Rumsfeld’s utter failures of the last six years, his comments describing a large majority of American citizens would be sufficient justification for calling for his ouster.

But we mustn’t simply disregard Rumsfeld’s record over the last 6 years. Whether by calculation or incompetence, the pre-War intelligence was anything but accurate. Who could forget Rumsfeld’s cryptic assurance to George Stephanopoulos regarding weapons of mass destruction in early 2003?

“We know where they are. They’re in the area around Tikrit and Baghdad and east, west, south and north somewhat.”

Unfortunately for America’s credibility, the facts did not support Rumsfeld’s claims. No weapons in Tikrit. No weapons in Baghdad. Not east nor west. Neither south nor north. Not even somewhat.

Interestingly enough, Donald Rumsfeld actually voted for Saddam Hussein to have Weapons of Mass Destruction before he voted against it. The November 1984 picture of Rumsfeld shaking hands with Saddam Hussein is worth far more than the 500 word limit on this column. Hussein had been using chemical weapons against Iran since early 1982.

Saddam Hussein’s lack of Weapons of Mass Destruction should’ve signaled the end of Rumsfeld’s tenure as Bush’s Secretary of Defense, but the blunders continued. Pooh-poohing not only the Powell Doctrine of Overwhelming Force but General Shinseki’s requests for several hundred thousand servicemen, Rumsfeld did not send enough troops.

His office put forth soundbytes that we would be greeted as liberators and that our soldiers would be showered with flowers and candy. That would be comical had the punch line not cost $1 billion per week and 2,642 American lives.

Perhaps Rumsfeld should exercise caution with the World War II allusions. We have now been in Iraq longer than we were in Europe during World War II.

Mr. Secretary, Iraq is no World War II, and George W. Bush is sure as hell no Franklin Roosevelt.

His speech is a startlingly explicit element of what appears to be a deliberate effort from the Bush Administration to emasculate dissenters and to equate support for the Administration’s policies with patriotism. Quite frankly, Rumsfeld’s behavior is un-American and unworthy of such a high position in our Government. He works for us, remember? Congressional Democrats should push for a vote of no confidence in this Secretary of Defense. We deserve better than Donald Rumsfeld.

Chris Fisher is a senior majoring in motion pictures and political science. He can be contacted at c.fisher2@umiami.edu. This article made him late for band.

September 8, 2006

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Student newspaper at the University of Miami


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