Day By Day© by Chris Muir.

Wednesday, December 22, 2004

A spirited Rumsfeld defense

I've been having a hard time understanding the constant attacks on Rumsfeld, but have shied away from the subject, since it implicates technical matters about which I know nothing. Nevertheless, I appreciate and believe in Jack Kelly's spirited defense of Rumsfeld, a part of which I include below:

I wish Rummy were more diplomatic. And though it isn't Rumsfeld's fault that we had only a 10 division Army when the war on terror began, he has been slow to recognize that the conflict we're in now requires an Army of at least 12 division equivalents. Still, I think Donald Rumsfeld has been the best secretary of defense ever. Rumsfeld and Gen. Tommy Franks presided over two of the most successful military campaigns in history. Rumsfeld was right and his critics wrong about the best way to wage war in Afghanistan and Iraq. 'Advocates of the old, heavyweight Army have never forgiven Rummy for advocating lighter, more mobile forces, but Rumsfeld was correct,' said the Washington Post's David Ignatius. Rumsfeld is re-aligning an obsolescent Cold War basing system that had tens of thousands of troops sitting needlessly in Germany and Korea, protecting the ungrateful from a threat that had vanished. Rumsfeld is overhauling a procurement system that delivers us very expensive weapons a generation behind modern technology, and a Pentagon civilian employee management system which delivers the least work for the most cost. Rumsfeld is pushing forward with ballistic missile defense, something for which we will be very grateful if diplomatic efforts fail (as they almost certainly shall) to get Iran to abandon its nuclear weapons program. None of this is important, Rumsfeld's critics say, because he's used an autopen to sign condolence letters to the families of service members killed in action.