Monday, March 20, 2006

Secretary of Defeat?

The Moose asks how much W. wants to win the war?

The situation in Iraq appears bleak. According to some, the country is at the brink or the beginning of a civil war. But, the war may not be lost there.

The war may be "lost" at home. The American people's confidence in the Administration's handling of the war is at an all-time low. The Bushies have earned the public's lack of confidence. But, the Administration suffers something far worse - a loss of credibility.

There is no reason that the American people should trust the Administration. The architects of the mistakes of this war have not been held accountable - notably Defense Secretary Rumsfeld.

Yesterday, retired Army General Paul Eaton who was responsible for training the Iraqi military wrote a devastating, blistering and powerful critique of Secretary Rumsfeld in the New York Times. General Eaton wrote,

"DURING World War II, American soldiers en route to Britain before D-Day were given a pamphlet on how to behave while awaiting the invasion. The most important quote in it was this: "It is impolite to criticize your host; it is militarily stupid to criticize your allies."

"By that rule, Defense Secretary Donald Rumsfeld is not competent to lead our armed forces. First, his failure to build coalitions with our allies from what he dismissively called "old Europe" has imposed far greater demands and risks on our soldiers in Iraq than necessary. Second, he alienated his allies in our own military, ignoring the advice of seasoned officers and denying subordinates any chance for input.

"In sum, he has shown himself incompetent strategically, operationally and tactically, and is far more than anyone else responsible for what has happened to our important mission in Iraq. Mr. Rumsfeld must step down."

Firing Rumsfeld, of course, will by no means guarantee that Iraq will improve. That is not the point. It is imperative that President Bush take concrete steps to demonstrate to the American people that there is a genuine change in course and that from now on he will require accountability. Republican leaders must go to the President and demand this change.

It may be too late. The American people are souring on this war. Their patience is wearing thin. This is time for bold action by this President to demonstrate that he hears the public's concern.

Does he really want to succeed or to hang on to those who have failed?

-- Posted at 8:54 AM | Link to this post | Email this post