Saturday, September 11

Mr Rumsfeld, its Osama, not Saddam.

Jeanne, over at Body and Soul, brought this to my attention. Twice Rumsfeld confused Saddam Hussien and Osama Bin Laden, from reuters.

In a speech to the National Press Club on the eve of the third anniversary of the Sept. 11 attacks, Rumsfeld began by saying the world just before the attacks was not as serene as some people now suggest.

"The leader of the opposition Northern Alliance, Masood, lay dead, his murder ordered by Saddam Hussein, by Osama bin Laden, Taliban's co-conspirator," Rumsfeld said.

He was referring to Ahmad Shah Masood who was in opposition to the ruling Taliban in Afghanistan and was killed by al Qaeda two days before the Sept. 11 attacks.

Later in responding to a question, Rumsfeld again confused Saddam and bin Laden in a discourse about how U.S. and coalition actions had made it more difficult for terrorists to operate.

"It's harder for them to travel between countries, it's harder for them to communicate with each other, it's harder for them to raise money, it's harder for them to transfer money, it's harder for them to buy weapons, it's harder for them to do everything," Rumsfeld said.

"Saddam Hussein, if he's alive, is spending a whale of a lot of time trying to not get caught. And we've not seen him on a video since 2001," Rumsfeld said.

"Now, he's got to be busy. Why is he busy? It's because of the pressure that's being put on him," he added.

The moderator later asked Rumsfeld if he had meant bin Laden, and the defense secretary replied: "I did. I meant we haven't seen Osama bin Laden."

Not only should this jackass have been fired for obvious incopetance in his job as the primary architect, of the war and occupation, he should be sitting in irons, awaiting trial for his crimes. Instead, the man who should understand the difference better than any of us, demonstrates his inability to keep his facts straight. From Freudian slip to playing the game of moral relevance, once decried on the right, since embraced in the aftermath of Abu Ghraib. In another example of a game called "missing the point entirely" Rumsfeld takes the cowards path.

Associated Press
Saturday, September 11, 2004; Page A04

Defense Secretary Donald H. Rumsfeld, responding to allegations that he fostered a climate that led to the prisoner-abuse scandal, said yesterday that the military's mistreatment of detainees was not as bad as what terrorists have done.

"Does it rank up there with chopping someone's head off on television?" he asked. "It doesn't."

We lost any semblance to the moral high ground when we started abusing prisoners, period. Whether in the end we were not as bad as Saddam or the terrorists is missing the point. We have fallen into the neighborhood occupied by those criminals and have tarred our Nation with that brush. We have slept with dogs and now choose to complain about the attendant infestation of fleas. We lost this war the moment the first prisoner was handled in violation of the Geneva conventions, we lost this war the moment an innocent person was subjected to torture. If the occupation planning was not doomed to failure, if we had been able, through actions, not rhetoric, to convince the iraqi's that we were there to help them, we may have avoided the fatal mistakes that followed and continue to result in sands stained with their blood and ours.