Look, Donald Rumsfeld is a very important person in our recent history. He is a very interesting character. As I mentioned a week or so ago, Donald Rumsfeld has always thought of himself as the smartest person in the room. The Unknown Known. We tortured people. We are not Iraq or some third world country that do these things. Torture was something that the other guys, do but not us. We have had Americans arguing that we should torture people in certain situations. I think that we are the good guys. I don’t think that we need to ever torture in order to get information.
While on Fox News former Secretary of Defense Donald Rumsfeld said, “We have status of forces agreements probably with 100, 125 countries in the world. This administration, the White House, and the State Department, have failed to get a status of forces agreement. A trained ape could get a status of forces agreement. It doesn’t take a genius.”
Donald Rumsfeld is one of those rare men who really believe that they are the smartest men in the room, no matter what room they are in. Let’s take a brief look at the failures of Donald Rumsfeld. He allowed Bin Laden to get away in the Tora Bora mountains. He failed to secure the peace in Iraq. He failed to go into Iraq with enough troops to secure the peace. “Stuff happens” was his famous reply when looting broke out in Baghdad. He allowed the Taliban to reform in Afghanistan. Several years ago, I said that Donald Rumsfeld should have been fired for not destroying the Taliban and Al Qaeda in Afghanistan. Oh, and what about Abu Ghraib? What about Gitmo?
I’m sorry. Donald Rumsfeld was the Secretary of Defense at a very important time in US history. There was probably more military stuff going on during his tenure than during anyone else’s. This man is a failure. Sure, he has millions in the bank. What he needed to do be a success was to kill or capture those who plotted, planned and carried out 9/11. He needed to control Afghanistan. He simply didn’t do his job.
Finally, Fox News put Rummy on because he is a reliable neocon voice. They knew exactly what he was going to say before he opened his mouth. Look, in the US we have plenty of problems. I just don’t think that Donald Rumsfeld has a single useful idea to help us solve any of our problems. Not one.
I continue to be flabbergasted by the callousness of Republicans. Eric Cantor has decided that $2 billion isn’t worth worrying about. I guess if you can’t worry about $2 billion then maybe $4 trillion could get his attention, maybe. The fact that the direct and indirect costs of the war could be as much as $4 trillion is not really a revelation to me. The problem I have is that Republicans continue to insist that throughout the Bush administration these wars were not to be expensive. As a matter fact, they suggested that it would be cheap. Remember how Donald Rumsfeld and his minions suggested that Iraq would pay for itself using oil revenues? We never even had the opportunity to have a real debate over the cost of the war because the wars were “paid for” by supplemental funding (deficit spending). Not once did Republicans stand up as a group and state they were spending an enormous amount of money and getting almost nothing in return. Not one of them said that we needed to cut something in order to pay for the wars in Iraq or Afghanistan. Not one of them suggested that we needed to raise revenues in order to pay for these wars. Yet, now, when we try to spend money to stimulate the economy and make life better for the middle class, the Republicans are having none of it. Their hypocrisy is infuriating.
From Yahoo News:
When President Barack Obama cited cost as a reason to bring troops home from Afghanistan, he referred to a $1 trillion price tag for America’s wars.
Staggering as it is, that figure grossly underestimates the total cost of wars in Iraq, Afghanistan and Pakistan to the U.S. Treasury and ignores more imposing costs yet to come, according to a study released on Wednesday.
The final bill will run at least $3.7 trillion and could reach as high as $4.4 trillion, according to the research project “Costs of War” by Brown University’s Watson Institute for International Studies. (http://www.costsofwar.org)
In the 10 years since U.S. troops went into Afghanistan to root out the al Qaeda leaders behind the September 11, 2001, attacks, spending on the conflicts totaled $2.3 trillion to $2.7 trillion.
Those numbers will continue to soar when considering often overlooked costs such as long-term obligations to wounded veterans and projected war spending from 2012 through 2020. The estimates do not include at least $1 trillion more in interest payments coming due and many billions more in expenses that cannot be counted, according to the study. (more…)