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What I Heard about Iraq

Eliot Weinberger: Watch and listen

3 February 2005
... In July 2001, I heard Condoleezza Rice say: ‘We are able to keep his arms from him. His military forces have not been rebuilt.’ On 11 September 2001, six hours after the attacks, I heard that DonaldRumsfeld said that it might be an opportunity to ‘hit’ Iraq. I heard that he said: ‘Go massive. Sweep it all up. Things related and not.’ I heard that Condoleezza Rice asked: ‘How do you ...

SH @ same time

Andrew Cockburn: Rumsfeld

31 March 2011
Known and Unknown: A Memoir 
by Donald Rumsfeld.
Sentinel, 815 pp., £25, February 2011, 978 1 59523 067 6
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... DonaldRumsfeld, you could say, has had a remarkable career, stretching from a middle-class upbringing amid wealthier neighbours on the edge of Chicago, through Congress and high office in the Nixon and Ford ...

Between Two Deaths

Slavoj Žižek: The Culture of Torture

3 June 2004
... being initiated into American culture: they were getting a taste of the obscenity that counterpoints the public values of personal dignity, democracy and freedom. No wonder, then, that on 6 May, DonaldRumsfeld admitted that these particular photographs were just the ‘tip of the iceberg’, that there are stronger things to come, including videos of rape and murder. In early 2003, the US ...

Short Cuts

Thomas Jones: Dissed

2 June 2005
... showed a disregard for authority that far surpasses anything Ali G has ever done. Perhaps the highlight was Galloway’s observation that he met Saddam Hussein exactly the same number of times that DonaldRumsfeld did; ‘the difference is DonaldRumsfeld met him to sell him guns and maps.’ As Ali G might say, ‘Respect ...

What I heard about Iraq in 2005

Eliot Weinberger: Iraq

5 January 2006
... Rice say there were 120,000 Iraqi troops trained to take over the security of the country; I heard Senator Joseph Biden, Democrat from Delaware, say that the number was closer to 4000; I heard DonaldRumsfeld say: ‘The fact of the matter is that there are 130,200 who have been trained and equipped. That’s a fact. The idea that that number’s wrong is just not correct. The number is right ...

At the Movies

Michael Wood: ‘Vice’

21 February 2019
... as he should – nothing is quite so visible in a movie as a supposedly invisible man. Bale is terrific in the part but he is not the film’s hero. He is its plump, ever present ghost. The hero is DonaldRumsfeld. This is what you get when you assign an extraordinarily gifted comedian, in this case Steve Carell, to a historical part. You get an act. This Rumsfeld is funny, rude, cynical and so ...

The World according to Cheney, Rice and Rumsfeld

Michael Byers: American isolationism

21 February 2002
... as powerful as the US has many choices, even when struck by a blow as heavy as that of 11 September. The President himself may sometimes forget to chew, but the Vice-President, Condoleezza Rice and DonaldRumsfeld would have been quick to spot the opportunities presented by the crisis. Doubters need only think of Jo Moore, Stephen Byers’s adviser, who got into trouble for suggesting that the attack ...

How to get on in the new Iraq

Carol Brightman: James Baker’s drop-the-debt tour

4 March 2004
... for him (something he had failed to do as campaign manager for Bush’s father when he was seeking re-election) – Baker stands for a different Middle East from the neocons and the hawks like DonaldRumsfeld. He made no secret of his opposition to waging unilateral war on Iraq, though he was more discreet than the former national security adviser Brent Scowcroft. But the challenge posed by Baker ...

Short Cuts

Thomas Jones: What’s your codename?

23 June 2005
... report claiming that Arkin received a ‘monthly stipend’ from the Iraqi government during the mid-1990s. The Pentagon has confirmed that the document is a forgery, but as Arkin wrote to DonaldRumsfeld on 17 March, ‘someone familiar with Defense Department classified reporting has forged this document and given it to the press in the hope that it would be reported as genuine. Such an action ...

The Money

Adam Shatz: What the War is Costing

6 March 2008
... Shortly before the invasion of Iraq, George Bush’s economic adviser, Larry Lindsey, estimated that the war would cost $200 billion. ‘Baloney,’ DonaldRumsfeld fumed, offering a figure of $50-60 billion, some of which he said would be supplied by America’s friends. Andrew Natsios, the head of the Agency for International Development, told Ted Koppel on ...

Boutique Faith

Jeremy Waldron: Against Free Speech

20 July 2006
Courting the Abyss: Free Speech and the Liberal Tradition 
by John Durham Peters.
Chicago, 309 pp., £18.50, April 2005, 0 226 66274 8
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... all in seeing a connection between speech and the possibility of violence. They point to it all the time as a way of justifying restrictions on citizens’ interventions at political gatherings. If DonaldRumsfeld comes to give a speech and someone in the audience shouts out that he is a war criminal, the heckler is quickly and forcibly removed. When I came to America, I was amazed that nobody thought ...

Better and Worse Worsts

Sadakat Kadri: American Trials

24 May 2007
The Trial in American Life 
by Robert Ferguson.
Chicago, 400 pp., £18.50, March 2007, 978 0 226 24325 2
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... to terrorists around the country? That’s not really what our judicial system is about.’ Instead, America’s foreign enemies would face trial before specially created executive tribunals, and DonaldRumsfeld was soon explaining what that was about. The judges would be chosen by Rumsfeld or a person appointed by him. Only active or retired military officers would be eligible. Evidence would be ...

Short Cuts

Thomas Jones: Kicking Dick Cheney

2 August 2007
... of the executive branch. The next step was to deny the right of detainees to be treated as prisoners of war. The Bush administration ‘fought one of its fiercest internal brawls’ – Cheney and DonaldRumsfeld on one side, Colin Powell and Condoleezza Rice on the other – ‘before Bush ratified the policy that Cheney had declared: the Geneva Conventions would not apply to al-Qaida or Taliban ...

Watching the War on al-Jazeera

Hugh Miles: Look both ways

17 April 2003
... television have not had that benefit either, of course, even though they live under a totalitarian regime which might take revenge on their families if they are recognised surrendering. The last time DonaldRumsfeld talked about the Conventions in public was to deny their provisions to prisoners taken in Afghanistan. There is an argument for showing corpses on screen: this is a war, people are dying ...

Waiting to Watch the War

Charles Glass: A report from an observation post in Northern Iraq

3 April 2003
... Each will raise its flag in the new Iraq. None wants to await the capricious favour of the American occupiers. The Americans will be free to designate thugs from the old regime, if they want. DonaldRumsfeld himself may still be on nodding terms with some of them from his early 1980s courtesy calls on Saddam’s entourage. The US may ask the soon-to-be ex-Baathists to share power with the ...

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