Rumsfeld Doubts on Terror War
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The following article is from the BBC about how Donal Rumsfled has raised concerns about the effectiveness and progress of the war on terror. The original article can be found at http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/world/middle_east/3205717.stm1.
Rumsfeld doubts on terror war
October 22, 2003
A leaked internal memo by US Defence Secretary Donald Rumsfeld says the US faces what is described as a "long, hard slog" in Iraq and Afghanistan.
The memo, which was sent to the Pentagon's senior civilian and military leaders last week and was first reported in the USA Today newspaper, also questions if the US really knows whether it is winning the war on terrorism.
Posing a number of challenging questions, the memo says the record against the al-Qaeda network is mixed, and suggests the US does not have the right mechanisms to know whether it is capturing, killing or deterring more terrorists than are being recruited.
US officials have played down the significance of the document, saying the defence secretary was merely sounding out senior colleagues on long-term issues.
Larry Di Rita, the Pentagon's acting spokesman and a special assistant to Mr Rumsfeld, confirmed the authenticity of the memo, but said it was intended to prompt Pentagon leaders to look beyond Iraq and Afghanistan at the larger picture of the war on terrorism, AFP news agency reports.
"These are clearly big questions that deserve big thinking," Mr Di Rita told reporters.
But the BBC's Pentagon correspondent, Nick Childs, says the memo is likely to lead to new questions in Congress and elsewhere about the Bush administration's policy in pursuing the war on terror.
Mr Rumsfeld argues that the Pentagon has yet to make "any truly bold moves", that it is not possible to transform it fast enough to fight the new war and that a new institution either inside or outside the Pentagon may be needed.
Mr Rumsfeld cited "mixed results" against the al-Qaeda network blamed for the 2001 attacks, "reasonable progress" in tracking down top Iraqis and "somewhat slower progress" in capturing Taleban leaders in Afghanistan.
Recipients of the document included chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff Air Force General Richard Myers, and Deputy Defence Secretary Paul Wolfowitz.
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This article is part of the following collection:
- New War on Terror
- Why I Opposed the Resolution to Authorize Force
- Main aid agencies reject US air drops
- Folly of aid and bombs
- Bombing Will Not Make U.S. More Secure
- US attacks raise mixed feelings in Africa
- Killing Them Softly: Starvation and Dollar Bills For Afghan Kids
- Mr. Bush is abusing both the UN and international law
- This is Not a War on Terrorism
- The Empire Wants War, Not Justice
- This War is a Fraud
- Hypocrisy, hatred and the war on terror
- Unjustified means
- World Opinion Opposes the Attack on Afghanistan
- Mass Death of Civilians in Afghanistan
- Congratulations America
- Annotated State of The Union
- Thoughts About America
- Kill the Messenger
- Tech companies chase homeland security
- Buying Trouble: Your Grocery List Could Spark a Terror Probe
- The return to Afghanistan: Collateral damage
- Afghan massacre haunts Pentagon
- Why U.S. Intelligence Stumbled
- Afghanistan: Time of transition
- Top White House Anti-Terror Boss Resigns
- This War on Terrorism is Bogus
- Rumsfeld Doubts on Terror War
- Iranian Agent Warned U.S. of Impending al-Qaida Attack
- American Troops Killing and Abusing Afghans
- War Rules and Law Enforcement Rules in Terror War
- Gap Grows Between U.S., World Public Opinion
- Bush Terror War Suffers Body Blow in Spain
- Guantanamo: Maybe None of Them Are Terrorists
- Blix Says Iraq War May Have Worsened Terror Threat
- War on Terrorism Looks Like a Loser
- US plans to 'fight the net' revealed
- America’s War on the Web
- Thousands Wrongly on Terror List
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