Former US Secretary of Defense dies at age 88

Rumsfeld and Bush

Rumsfeld, L, was the youngest and oldest secretary of defense in history.

Former US Defense Secretary Donald Rumsfeld, one of the leading architects of the Iraq War, died at the age of 88.

Serving under President George W. Bush, he was a major supporter of the administration’s “war on terrorism.”

The US military launched a campaign in Afghanistan after the 9/11 attack and invaded Iraq in 2003.

Rumsfeld resigned in 2006 amid the collapse of the conflict, but always defended his record.

In response to the news, President Bush described him as a “very good person,” “never escaped responsibility,” and “a model civil servant.”

Rumsfeld’s family said he died at home on Tuesday in the town of Taos, New Mexico.

“It’s very sad to share the news that American politician and devoted husband, father, grandfather and great-grandfather Donald Rumsfeld have died,” they said in a statement.

Born in Chicago in 1932, Rumsfeld’s political and private career spanned decades.

He first came to Washington, DC in the 1960s and held multiple positions under Richard Nixon and Gerald Ford.

In 1975, he became the youngest person to be appointed Secretary of Defense and later the oldest to serve that role during his second term under President Bush.

Prior to the March 2003 invasion of Iraq, Mr Rumsfeld insisted on the invasion. He claimed that weapons of mass destruction pose a danger to the world, but no such weapon has ever been found.

One of his most memorable moments was in 2002 when he was asked about the lack of evidence of Iraq’s weapons of mass destruction. He gave a very ridiculous answer about “known known” and “known unknown”.

However, Rumsfeld remained largely rebellious against his record after his resignation. In his 2011 memoirs, he defended his decision on the war in Iraq, but regretted some of his comments.

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