Thursday, November 1, 2007

From the Desk of Donald Rumsfeld . . .


For those of us only just recovering from the Halloween scariness of belligerent children demanding tributes and threatening to create havoc if denied, here is today's shocking news: Don Rumsfeld didn't like the media and wrote as many as 60 memos a day to uparmor his E-Ring bulwarks against assaults emanating from fronts at home and abroad.

They call the flurry of these memos "snowflakes," but they are more like acid rain.
Neither Europe nor the United Nations understands the threat or the bigger picture, Rumsfeld complains. In other words, the people who, prior to 9/11, had suffered close to 100% of all the world's worst terrorism just don't get it.

It's probably just a media plot to deny Rumsfeld's heirs the chance to cash in on a "Write It When I'm Gone" windfall. But since the post-resignation release of his classified memo arguing for "a major adjustment" in Iraq because the war wasn't going well didn't do much to spark a reappraisal of his tenure, it is doubtful these -- marked just "for official use only" -- will help much either with the legacy thing.

But it's not for trying: The Post reveals that Rumsfeld privately shrugged off a deteriorating situation in Iraq a year after invasion as much has he did publicly; that fear-mongering was key to job-security strategy; that Muslims don't like hard work and that's why they get into trouble and have to be treated differently.

About that last one: ask your parents and grand-parents if they ever heard something like that in the good old days, except the proper noun in sentences then was "Blacks" (I guarantee another word was used), or Irish or Italians or Mexicans ...."

War Is Hell. You Didn't Know That. Really.

In a 2004 memo on the deteriorating situation in Iraq, the man who told us that you "go to war with the army you have" concluded that the challenges there are "not unusual," the Post reports.

Attacked by a platoon of retired generals calling for him to step down in 2006, Rummy smoothly played the fear card from the bottom of the deck: "Make the American people realize they are surrounded in the world by violent extremists." Leave out the part that I am one of them.

Neither Europe nor the United Nations understands the threat or the bigger picture, Rumsfeld complains in another memo. In other words, the people who, prior to 9/11, had suffered close to 100% of all the world's worst terrorism just don't get it.
He also lamented that oil wealth has at times detached Muslims "from the reality of the work, effort and investment that leads to wealth for the rest of the world. Too often Muslims are against physical labor, so they bring in Koreans and Pakistanis while their young people remain unemployed," he wrote. "An unemployed population is easy to recruit to radicalism."
Right. So the Saudi Royal family is radicalized because they don't work, and Muslims who toil in the oil fields -- didn't he see Syriana? -- are the long tail of our effort to infuse Democracy in the region.

This is Captain Queeg stuff. No mention of a conspiracy to deny him his strawberries, but very much they fought me at every turn. As Holly Hunter replied when a sarcastic boss asserted that It must be nice to always think you're the smartest person in the room: No, it's awful.

The twice former and never again defense chief is understandably miffed. Rumsfeld aide Keith Urbahn tells the paper this is all very unfair. Gross mischaracterizations. Only "carefully selected" examples of some 20,000 memos his boss wrote in office excerpted. Misunderstood as the planner, helmsman and co-chief evangelist of the the Iraq war, Rumsfeld is now misunderstood emeritus.

I thought Halloween was yesterday. I am still scared.

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