Comment on Entry: Rumsfeld To Resign, authored by Matt Rosenberg
1. I never knew what the problem Rumsfeld had with his generals. It seems like yesterday, but the guys I went to college with were 3 star generals now. They were a pampered bunch during school and again after school. They always got what they wanted, so when Rummy took over and demanded they adapt to a new way of doing business, they revolted. Or was there more?

I still can't figure out the why.

Why is Rummy the scapegoat? And I don't mean Bush's scapegoat because he stuck with Rummy through thick and thin.

But, you know Bush. Rummy would be a distraction with the new Congress, so he took the easier way out. I hope Bush doesn't want to "just get along".

Posted by swatter at November 8, 2006 10:48 AM
2. Note that Robert Gates is an extremely good friend with James Baker. What is going to happen in Iraq is whatever the Baker-Hamilton Commission recommends. Personally, I feel much better having foreign affairs run by James Baker than by anybody currently in the Executive Branch.

Posted by Steven Donegal at November 8, 2006 10:50 AM
3. If Bush was going to fire Rummy why didn't he do it a few weeks ago and maybe save us a few seats in the process. That being said, I think he's weak for doing so. Bush has always been best when he's not cowtowing to his cabinet but instead being a gun-tottin', swaggerin' Texan.
Congratulations Speaker Pelosi, now let the bombs fall where they may. My prediction: terror attack on domestic soil passenger aircraft within the next six months. Casualties in the 2-300 range. And, unfortunately, maybe that's just what we need. It's obvious people don't remember what happened 5 years ago.

Posted by FullContactPolitics at November 8, 2006 10:52 AM
4. I absolutely agree, swatter. I've never understood what was supposed to be so awful about Rumsfield. And hearing from the radio that the new guy is from Bush Sr.'s cabinet makes me very nervous. Bush Sr. did a horrible thing by not taking Saddam down in 1991. This is definitely a sign of weakness that the terrorists are watching.

I'm starting to feel actively fearful now. This is not good news, not good news at all. Sadly, too many of the sheep in this country don't understand why they shouldn't be jubilant over this.

Posted by ferrous at November 8, 2006 10:59 AM
5. FullContact... your logic sounds the same as my wife's and my 19 year old son's. I doubt none of the three of you understands anything about herd mentality. If Bush had fired Rumsfeld just before the election, it would have created a stampede of "see I told you so" people running to the Democrats. You could be looking at veto-proof majorities now, instead of the little disaster we now face. Bush followed the only option available to him "stay the course".

Posted by huckleberry at November 8, 2006 11:01 AM
6. In hindsight, I agree. Given the outcome of this election, if Rumsfeld had resigned a few months ago and Bush had shown tangible steps towards making Iraq better, the election may have been different. At the very least, it would have gotten Foley out of the headlines. Now, both houses are going to the Dems. That's bad news.

Posted by Palouse at November 8, 2006 11:02 AM
7. Just for the record, and to keep people's heads from exploding, Palouse is agreeing with FullContactPolitics, and not me (or Ferrous).

Posted by huckleberry at November 8, 2006 11:04 AM
8. I agree with Fullcontactpolitics, but not the timeframe. Rumsfeld going a few weeks before the election would have seemed desperate. It should probably have happened six months ago, followed by Bush announcing new steps to make the war a success. This would have forced the Democrats to outline their plan for the war. The Democrats won this election with no plan on the war, other than to wait for the Baker-Hamilton report. That's because there was so much dissatisfaction over Bush and Rumsfeld.

Posted by Palouse at November 8, 2006 11:14 AM
9. one thing the rumsfeld change means is: 1) a lot of the talk, here and elsewhere, regarding iraq was nothing more than puffed up, talking points that were innaccurate; 2) we may get a more honest, intelligent discussion about the iraq situation.

as i've said before, your republican talking points about the iraq war are going to change. big time.

it'll be interesting to what extent people will be held accountable for repeating some of the tripe that the administration palmed off on us regarding iraq. (and i don't mean congressional republicans, they already got their just desserts).


"Bush has always been best when he's not cowtowing to his cabinet but instead being a gun-tottin', swaggerin' Texan."

that kind of thinking gets you to pick a fight you may not win....

gates was an aide/assistant to skowcroft. skowcroft thought invading iraq was a bad idea.

it's good that bush, jr. has access to his dad's rolodex.

Posted by dinesh at November 8, 2006 11:17 AM
10. "In hindsight, I agree. Given the outcome of this election, if Rumsfeld had resigned a few months ago and Bush had shown tangible steps towards making Iraq better, the election may have been different. At the very least, it would have gotten Foley out of the headlines. Now, both houses are going to the Dems. That's bad news. "

And why did it take everyone on this blog so long to figure this out?

Where was the Congressional Republican leadership on this issue? - No where to be found.

Stay the course Bush will go down in history as being one the worst presidents - disliked by the both left and right.

Posted by M&M at November 8, 2006 11:20 AM
11. two decisions will be made

1- cut
2- how fast to run.

Posted by Andy at November 8, 2006 11:21 AM
12. Andy: I agree with you. And when the decision is made to cut and run, we will see slaughter the likes of which we saw in Vietnan, probably worse, in Iraq. And just like in Vietnam, the American public will pretend it is not happening. We'll go happily on our way, eyes firmly closed, until the next attack on our soil makes us take another good, hard look at what we're facing. Regarding Rumsfeld, I too believe it was generals who didn't want to adapt. Most of those officers who spoke against Rumsfeld were retired, some voluntarily, some not, because they wanted to do things the "old way". And when those officers spoke out, the Dems used it as a hammer against the Administration. Times have changed. Too bad those generals couldn't.

Posted by katomar at November 8, 2006 12:24 PM
13. Katomar, I believe you rightly perceive reality.

Posted by huckleberry at November 8, 2006 12:38 PM
14. Like pulling our 140,000 soldiers out of Iraq and placing 50,000 on our borders and ports of entry.
And enforce our immigration laws.
The 9/11 terrorists didn't sneak in. Most were here illegally. They overstayed their student visas. If we had actually sent them home when their visa had expired there would have been no terrorist attack.

Yep, we left the Vietnam quagmire and won the cold war. Sounds like a good strategy to me.

Posted by M&M at November 8, 2006 12:42 PM
15. the Dems are in a tough spot now; they must cut and run cause that's all theyve been shrieking about for the past three years.

if they dont, they see how swiftly America changes course.

this will be interesting to watch.

Posted by Lauri at November 8, 2006 12:44 PM
16. M&M, are you even familiar with what happened to the Vietnamese and Cambodian people after the U.S. withdrew? Do you not understand what that war was about?

Posted by huckleberry at November 8, 2006 01:57 PM
17. huckleberry,
The same thing that happened to the Filipino people when we left the Philipines in WW2.
Yes, the conflict in Vietnam was part of the our containment strategy during the Cold War.
And I will repeat myself. We lost the battle and won the war.

Posted by M&M at November 8, 2006 02:13 PM
18. I'm sure one reason rummy resiged is that he and the President didn't want Rummy tied up in hearings for the next two years, which would have almost certainly happened. Now the Dems get to put forth their plans during their confirmation hearings over Gates. It will be interesting to see what their position really is. This might be a pretty brilliant move by Bush. "Okay, now America gets to see what they really voted for"

Posted by LayZ at November 8, 2006 02:28 PM
19. While he's at it, perhaps he should familiarize himself with what happened to thousands of German civilians in the eastern bloc countries following the death of Hitler and the end of WWII. Wars rarely end nice and tidy.

Posted by Palouse at November 8, 2006 02:34 PM
20. M&M says:

The same thing that happened to the Filipino people when we left the Philipines in WW2.
Yes, the conflict in Vietnam was part of the our containment strategy during the Cold War.
And I will repeat myself. We lost the battle and won the war.

I am not sure that our strategic withdrawal of American forces from the Philippines under the onslaught of Imperial Japanese forces is a good comparison to our loss of will to continue the struggle in Vietnam. Do you really want to equate the two? And in the Philippines, after all, we did return!

Vietnam (and Korea) were a part of our containment strategy. And some pinko elements from within our own citizenry (he was for the Vietnam War before he was against it) acted traitorously to undermine our will to continue the struggle. You got the memo on that, didn't you? (Ah, I haven't used the word pinko in 30 years!!!)

America "lost" the battle in the streets to the leftist-liberal crowd in 1976, and we have been continuing that battle ever since. The Kremlin fell, but the Democrats fight on.

Posted by huckleberry at November 8, 2006 02:42 PM
21. I'm hoping that most of the Democrat's talk of a pullout or phased withdrawl was a lot of campaign hot air. I think even they realize to admit defeat and leave would be unpopular with the country not to mention the world. I think even Democrats know victory is critical to our future security. What new course will they take? They'll probably threaten Bush with no funding for the war unless he agrees to sign on to a bunch of domestic spending. THAT is the extent of their influence on the war. There won't be any drastic "new direction" because the only other alternatives; withdrawl or flood in more troops are not very appealing politically.

Posted by Scott C at November 8, 2006 04:21 PM
22. Well, it took less than twelve hours for the election results to restore some responsibility and accountability to our White House. (Either that, or President Bush flat-out lied last week. Take your pick.) Next year, the Chairs of the Armed Services Committees can ask questions like, "Why did you send our sons and daughters into a war zone without body armor?" Rumsfeld nicely demonstrated the difference between sending others to die, and having actual courage. The moment he knew he'd get tough questions, he quit. I hope the President's supporters get used to such public displays, because they're going to be a staple of the television news for the next two years. (I hope the Congress does call him to testify, so that the mother of a dead soldier can ask him the above question. I'd like to know the answer too.)

Posted by Paddy Mac at November 8, 2006 09:52 PM
23. What was so wrong with Rumsfeld? For starters there was his insistence on sending just enough troops to lose. This was a POLITICAL, not military, decision. He and others in the administration understood that Congressional approval of their war of choice depended upon avoiding any suggestion that a draft might be necessary . Therefore, regime change in Iraq must be a presented as a "cakewalk".

Then there was Rummy's "shit happens" attitude towards the early looting -- and while the oil firlds and Oil Ministry buildings were secured not only were Iraq's national treasures in the museums left unguarded but so were many of Saddam's ammo dumps and even locations suspected of storing WMDs.

There was also the decision to limit reconstruction contracts to companies from "coalition of the willing countries", denying Iraqis the benefit of open bidding. That was so unnecessary. Coalition country companies would have done quite well without that and possibilities for bringing aboard late joiners to the coalition would have been much improved.

Did Rumsfled dnounce the infamous Gonzales "torture memo"? Did he fire anyone over Abu Graib? (HINT: the answer is two letters starting with "n").

What were Iraqis supposed to think of this? Protecting the Oil Ministry but not the museums? Treating reconstruction as a pork barrel? Winking at torture? Rumsfeldian policies could not have been better designed to LOSE hearts and minds; i.e., to lose politically a war that could hardly fail to be won militarily given the imbalance of forces.

All of you who can't see what was so wrong about Rumsfeld need reminding of Clauswitz'z wise observation that war is politics by other means. That means you don't win simply by bombing and shooting -- or with just "shock and awe". You have to know what you are doing politically, and Rummy has been a political moron.


Posted by Adam_Smith at November 9, 2006 05:52 AM
24. Keep Rummy. Dump Bush.

Ever since his wish to put his personal friend Harriet Meiers on the SCOTUS and his pig-headed opposition to constructive criticism from his base, that Bush is a very, very flawed and strange man has become increasingly obvious even to those of us who have supported him for so long. (Odd that he blithely accepts slanders from Tedddy Kennedy, yet, like King Lear, he expects only paeans of praise from his real supporters.)

The GOP and conservatism are NOT synonomous, and if it's necessary to stage a palace coup to rescue conservatism and the future of the country, then without shedding a tear, we should readily throw the President under the bus. We wouldn't even have to do it ourselves. We could just let Nancy and friends, unopposed, at him, and then he can step down for the good of the country and we can put a real conservative in the office of the VEEP, ready to wage a succesful campaign for the presidency in 2008.

Posted by Cartman at November 9, 2006 07:14 PM
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