Rumsfeld, Iraq, Jim Powell discussed on The World: Latest Edition
After he was forced to retire. It's about the war on terror. The long struggle we are in is complex. It's unfamiliar and it's still little understood leading some to believe that there is no need to go on so jim powell is the war in iraq to what degree is donald rumsfeld responsible for the decision to invade iraq in two thousand three. He was relatively under involved in the decision to go to war. Use the nine eleven attacks as the justification for invading iraq itself. Dick cheney was much more centrally involved in that paul wolfowitz and some others but it was when the planning for the war began in execution that rumsfeld himself came much more into centerstage to your knowledge. Did he ever feel regret about what happened in iraq or take responsibility. It's worth being clear about what it is that rumsfeld should take responsibility for might feel culpable which was essentially. He refused to prepare for what it would mean to hold the territory that the us forces could take relatively quickly in the spring of two thousand three rumsfeld believed in a concept of lightweight precision military operations. He kept low balling the figures for what it would take in terms of troop presence to hold rack and in his public and private life both in the following years of secretary of defense and then as a private citizen he was notably unreflective unrepentant quite a contrast to robert mcnamara who spent the rest of his life after secretary of defense during vietnam war essentially bearing the burden of those decisions. In roussel's memoir. I mean despite the massive casualties in iraqi essentially seemed to say that the war went over time and over budget. Did he ever express any regrets about the death toll. Not that i would am aware. And his seems to be in the mate nature of the man that that he had been so successful so early with his jaunty. Straight ahead approach and it's worth mentioning that after serving as the youngest secretary of defense in. Us history under gerald ford. He went on to become a very successful business. Ceo and made a lot of money that way and everything in his life had prepared him for the idea. Quick decisions snap judgments. Look forward rather than back. I'm not aware that he ever talked about the hundreds of thousands of lives that were lost in iraq and around the world and the united states because of the way he had planned the war. It seems like everyone who knew rumsfeld friend or foe describe him as driven tireless smart politically cunning as someone who interviewed him several times. Jim how did he come across. He was somebody who prided himself on. Quick re partee like responses to questions. He viewed interviews almost as debates rumsfeld enjoyed the sort of fencing perry and thrust of discussions. You know really mean that you can't say that will what do you mean okay. I'll i did say that. And so back and forth again. He enjoyed the quickness. I think as opposed to the depth so he was interesting to talk with. But i think it showed again the strengths and perhaps the limitations of his executive functions. That's fascinating jim. What do you think is ron cells legacy sedley. It has to be the management and mismanagement of the iraq war. He was the exemplar of a mid century moderate republicanism. When he rose in politics he ran the office of economic opportunity during the nixon and ford a year and was an ambassador to nato but sadly he went back perhaps when he should not have and made a very destructive decision even worse in its consequences. James fallow is a writer journalist and correspondent for the atlantic who interviewed and wrote about donald rumsfeld throughout his long career in public service. Jim thank you very much a marco my pleasure. Thank you the impact of us. Wars in iraq and afghanistan is a story that we continue following a story that continues to develop as we near the twentieth anniversary of nine eleven. Visit the world dot. Org to read and listen to our coverage of the so called forever wars and while you're there sign up for a newsletter emailed to you each morning that's all at the world dot. Org fans of the tour de france watched in horror on saturday as a massive crash. Derail the first stage at the mother all cycling races..