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U.S. Rep. Maxine Waters Says: Leaked Rumsfeld Memo Demonstrates Lack of Credibility

July 30, 2009
Press Release

U.S. Representative Maxine Waters (CA-35), Chair and Co-Founder of the 73-Member "Out of Iraq" Congressional Caucus, released the following statement regarding the memo authored by outgoing Secretary of Defense, Donald Rumsfeld, in which he makes numerous recommendations to change the course of the Bush Administration's failed policy in Iraq:
"The leaked Rumsfeld memo lacks credibility, and it comes too late to provide any solace to the families who have lost loved ones fighting in a war that should have never been started.  Upon closer examination, the memo reveals a number of serious problems that further demonstrate exactly why, under the watch of Rumsfeld and Bush, the invasion of Iraq has fallen into a full-scale civil war.  Furthermore, until the occupation is ended, there can be no serious discussions about developing comprehensive social services to aid Iraqi citizens, regaining the trust of Middle East nations, or rebuilding Iraq."

"The memo, which the Pentagon confirmed was authored by Rumsfeld, was leaked to the media over the weekend.  It demonstrates exactly why the outgoing Secretary of Defense was fired and why the President should have accepted his resignation a long time ago.  Some of the ideas in the memo were plagiarized from Democrats whom, for the last several months, the Bush Administration has accused of being defeatist and wanting to ‘cut-and-run.'  Another of his recommendations would put our troops directly in the line of fire on the Iraqi borders between Iran and Syria with the insurgents in front of them and the militias at their back.  Additionally, he suggested embedding members of the Iraqi Security Forces with U.S. troops.  This idea is extremely dangerous because it has been well established that the security forces have been infiltrated by members of groups who seek to harm our troops on a daily basis."

"The memo was so lacking in credibility that even the White House is already putting distance between it and the President.  Sunday, on Meet the Press, National Security Advisor Stephen Hadley referred to it as a ‘laundry list of ideas' that was neither ‘a game plan' nor ‘an effort to sort of try to set out the way forward in Iraq'."

"Rumsfeld's constant failures and unwillingness to develop a plan to bring our troops home from Iraq has caused this country unnecessary pain and suffering that could have been avoided if he had just been honest with the American people.  This nation can no longer afford to pay the price for Rumsfeld's mistakes.  His input is no longer needed or of value, and it is time for him to move on and allow military experts who still have a modicum of credibility to develop a plan that will end the occupation of Iraq and bring our troops home."