Analysis: Donald Rumsfeld’s policies have reverberant results to this day

Donald Rumsfeld was one of the key figures in shaping the geopolitics of our time. It played an important role in involving the United States in the war between Iraq and Afghanistan and in pursuing policies that create bitter divisions at home and abroad.

As Defense Minister under two U.S. presidents, he was heavily influenced by the George W. Bush administration’s neoconservative ideology, and the results have been echoed to this day in the U.S. defense and diplomatic approach. I helped draw a blueprint.

Rumsfeld, who died Wednesday at the age of 88, was a veteran politician, Richard Nixon’s counselor in the 1960s, a senior member of the Gerald Ford administration, and an envoy to the Middle East under Ronald Reagan. He was also a third-term member of parliament and a permanent envoy to NATO and the White House Chief of Staff.

President Donald Rumsfeld appointed Secretary of Defense Donald Rumsfeld in 1975, witnessing the transition from conscription to volunteers, reversing the steady decline in defense budgets and attempting to increase the country’s military power and conventional and nuclear weapons.

This led to tensions with Secretary of State Henry Kissinger, who was engaged in SALT (Strategic Arms Limitation Negotiations) with the Soviet Union.

A declassified transcript of a telephone conversation shows that Kissinger is urging Ford to tell Rumsfeld to “it works” in negotiations. There was also long-term hostility between Rumsfeld and George Bush’s senior CIA director.

Still, Bush’s son reappointed Rumsfeld as defense secretary when he was president — just before 9/11 happened. And Rumsfeld’s influence rose to that height under George W. Bush, before it later collapsed.

The Bush administration included many prominent neocons, including Paul Wolfowitz, Elliott Abrams, Richard Perle, and Paul Bremer. Rumsfeld and Vice President Dick Cheney were not considered neoconservatives in their own right, but were able to put into practice their idea of ​​supporting the role of Israel and the United States, especially in the Middle East.

It was this group, backed by the British Tony Blair administration, who launched the invasion of Iraq under the false excuse of Saddam Hussein, who possesses weapons of mass destruction.

When the neoconservatives with Rumsfeld and Chainy’s acquiescence appointed Bremer as the head of the Coalition Provisional Authority, the first hope for a relatively peaceful path to the new government disappeared. In his position as an effective Iraqi general, Bremer enacted a policy of deberthing with disastrous consequences.

Rumsfeld completely postponed the Bush administration’s previous invasion of Afghanistan. But after the Taliban’s swift overthrow, and at a time when Afghanistan should have been rebuilt in a stable manner, Ramself was one of those who pushed to move important resources to Iraq to defeat Saddam Hussein. did. The Taliban were fed and watered by Pakistani military and intelligence supporters and returned to Afghanistan using the security gap.

Rumsfeld faced growing criticism as the situation in Iraq was unraveled in the midst of violence. The Senate Military Commission held him accountable for a scandal of shocking torture and ill-treatment in Abu Ghraib while facing critical scrutiny of the conduct of the conflict. Rumsfeld offered to resign twice, but Bush asked him to resign.

In 2006, eight US and other NATO retired generals and admirals called on Rumsfeld to resign, accusing him of “terrible” military plans and strategic incompetence. Their views were said to have been shared by 75 percent of field executives.

Rumsfeld tried to challenge the accusation, and President Bush stood beside him again. However, criticism continued unabated, and the Defense Minister resigned on the eve of the 2006 midterm elections. This news didn’t come out until the election day. Many senior Republicans complained that previous news of his resignation may have saved votes.

To some extent, Rumsfeld was a scapegoat of the collective failure of the US administration in Iraq. However, the policy he adhered to was fundamentally flawed, and he refused to accept that he could be wrong.

These policies in Iraq and Afghanistan, and generally in the Middle East, have contributed significantly to the intensification of the radicals among the Muslims who promoted the rise of al-Qaeda and Isis in the region and brought jihad to Europe and the United States. Is also true.

Journalists reporting on those wars have come across Rumsfeld many times. When he visited Mazar-i-Sharif in northern Afghanistan in 2004, he told reporters that the Taliban were “reached their limits and virtually finished and will not play a future role in Afghanistan.” Told.

Of course, he wasn’t the only one who couldn’t predict how things would unfold in the invaded land without giving due consideration to what was needed for repair and reconstruction in the difficult aftermath.

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