Donald Rumsfeld was a criminal in a suit and tie USA and Canada


Donald Rumsfeld was a criminal disguised as a banal, semi-consistent bureaucrat with a well-tailored suit and tie.

Stripped of all the rigor embroidery, this is the epitaph that came to my mind instantly when I learned of his passing yesterday.

I also suspect that this will be how the many damaged people who inhabit what remains of the many damaged places where it caused such damage, suffering and pain will remember it.

And, if the truth is a guide, this is how it should be remembered by anyone who is not blinded by the litany of pleasant lies that will now be told about who and what Rumsfeld was.

In this predictable sense, there will be the usual effusive compliments, written by the usual gifted suspects announcing a stellar, uncompromising life of service to a succession of sometimes flexible presidents and a grateful nation.

For a bitter taste of almost unhealthy revisionism that will surely follow his death, here is the Associated Press describing Rumsfeld “as a skilled and visionary bureaucrat of a modern American army” whose reputation “was unraveled. for the long and costly Iraq war. “

According to the unknown AP story, Rumsfeld apparently led a rather benign, but accomplished life, his “skill” and “vision,” sadly undone by, alas, a wrong war.

Without ending Rumsfeld’s bad career, the AP shared this playful vignette about the former U.S. Secretary of Defense with readers: “‘ Rummy, ’as he was often called, was ambitious, witty, energetic, attractive. and able to enjoy great personal warmth. “

Oh my god.

These are the undeniable moments in which the “establishment” press reiterates its credentials by establishing such beneficent and supposedly “nuanced” tributes to powerful men with important titles when the moment demands blunt and inflexible honesty.

Decency cannot allow for the rapid laundering of Rumsfeld’s repellent legacy as a spy and unrepentant warrior, an unapologetic architect of covert torture chambers, and a state-sanctioned kidnapping racket known as “surrenders”.

Rumsfeld personified – with divine and stubborn zeal – all the familiar, corrosive, and inhuman aspects of the discredited doctrine of U.S. exceptionalism that has repeatedly translated into despair, destruction, and death through ‘a planet with scars.

In Rumsfeld’s distorted geopolitical calculation, the United States was the benevolent police officer Globo, and he, the happy warrior in a sharp suit and tie, imagined a world — especially in the Middle East and Afghanistan — that resembled to the mythical ideal of the United States. of democracy and plurality.

The ugly and ironic irony, of course, is that one of the defining traits of evangelical believers like Rumsfeld — like the presidents he worked for — is the necessary ability, and indeed the need, to mutilate and kill on an almost incomprehensible scale. to achieve their supposed philanthropic designs.

Rumsfeld was a complacent official who, with facts and words, allowed, in his monotonous flat and bureaucratic, the assassins who occupied the oval office, also known as commander-in-chief.

With this measure, Rumsfeld was a success. He ordered other people to kill from the comfortable and short-sighted cocoon of the Pentagon, safe, as always, from any real measure of risk or responsibility.

Thus, in the raw residue of the 9/11 terrorist attacks, Rumsfeld and his equally doctrinaire conspirators seized the opportunity to enact their lethal and calamitous imperial plans.

The first was the invasion of Afghanistan in September 2001 to overthrow the Taliban and defeat Al Qaeda. History and geography should have tempered Rumsfeld’s ingrained instincts to immerse himself in war. They didn’t.

The sad and indelible consequences of Rumsfeld’s humor and strategic madness are evident: countless innocent Afghans and disfigured and dead American soldiers, wasted billions, and a patient and resurrected Taliban willing to reaffirm his evil rule over a people wounded and landed two decades after America invaded.

Rumsfeld’s disastrous adventure in Afghanistan was a precursor to the Bush regime’s cataclysmic miscalculation in Iraq.

It was a war of choice stemming from a large fabricated lie – validated and regurgitated by the very press of the establishment politely praising Rumsfeld today – that Saddam Hussein not only possessed weapons of mass destruction, but was intentional, with a temperament. of “crazy”, to release them in London and beyond.

Again, Rumsfeld and the cocksure company who insisted the war would be quick, cheap, and win-win warned: there was no ADM; an invasion would destabilize, not “liberate” Iraq and neighboring countries; and the cost in lives and treasures would be incalculable.

Rumsfeld mocked the annoying ideas and concerns. “I don’t do reservoirs,” he once said.

Oh yeah, he did.

Iraqis and Iraqis continue to suffer the trauma – in mind, body and spirit – of Rumsfeld’s pride, cruelty and ignorance.

Rumsfeld aggravated his cloying negligence by playing an agile clandestine and lawless infrastructure adviser created by George W Bush and Dick Cheney to spy on and discredit enlightened Americans who opposed the wars in Afghanistan and Iraq.

Yet perhaps the most obscene and graphic evidence of Rumsfeld’s intrinsic crime was the international network of dungeons organized under his command inside and outside Iraq to torture – by means of sick and perverted means and tools – anyone. suspected of collaborating with American “enemies”.

Rumsfeld considered the rule of law and international codes of conduct to be disposable anachronisms, while American secret thugs were making, with impunity, kidnapping and handing over human beings as luggage to torture dungeons where they were abused and forgotten. .

Through it all, Rumsfeld let out a smile that was, at the same time, a sign of his arrogance and the certainty of justice of the ruinous mission of salvation of the United States abroad. His infamous meaningless answers to questions about the serious failures of that mission exposed Rumsfeld’s chronic inconsistency and fatal vanity.

Rumsfeld probably knew he would escape being responsible for the pain and misery he inflicted on so many damaged people, on so many damaged places.

He was reportedly able to die at home, surrounded by family.

This is a quiet, gentle destination that Donald Rumsfeld did not deserve and that he denied to so many other damaged people, in so many other damaged places.

The views expressed in this article are those of the author and do not necessarily reflect the editorial stance of Al Jazeera.

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