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Donald Rumsfeld

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Donald Rumsfeld

21st United States Secretary of Defense
In office
January 20, 2001 – Present
President George W. Bush
Preceded by William S. Cohen
Succeeded by Robert Gates is Secretary-designate
13th United States Secretary of Defense
In office
November 20, 1975 – January 20, 1977
President Gerald Ford
Preceded by James R. Schlesinger
Succeeded by Harold Brown
6th White House Chief of Staff
In office
September 1974 – November 20, 1975
President Gerald Ford
Preceded by Alexander Haig
Succeeded by Dick Cheney
Born July 9, 1932 (age 74)
Evanston, IL, USA
Political party Republican
Religion Presbyterian

Donald Henry Rumsfeld (born July 9, 1932) is the 21st and current United States Secretary of Defense. His term of office began January 20, 2001, under President George W. Bush. On November 8, 2006, Rumsfeld tendered his resignation as Secretary of Defense. He will continue to serve until confirmation of his successor by the Senate. Including his time serving as the 13th Secretary of Defense under President Ford from 1975 to 1977, Rumsfeld will become the longest-serving Secretary of Defense if he remains until December 29, 2006. He is both the youngest and the oldest person to have served as U.S. Secretary of Defense.

Rumsfeld also served in various positions under President Richard Nixon, as well as four terms in the United States House of Representatives, and as U.S. Ambassador to the North Atlantic Treaty Organization (NATO) (1973–1974).

He was an aviator in the U.S. Navy between 1954 and 1957, before transferring to the Reserve. In public life he has also served as an official in numerous federal commissions and councils.


[edit] Background and family

[edit] Youth

Donald Rumsfeld was born in Chicago, Illinois to George Donald Rumsfeld and Jeannette Huster. His great-great-grandfather Heinrich Rumsfeld emigrated from Weyhe near Bremen in Northern Germany in the 19th century.[1] One of his ancestors (named "Rumpsfeld", with a P) from Leeste married a woman in Südweyhe. The name was later misspelled in the church book. Rumsfeld grew up in Winnetka, Illinois.

Rumsfeld became an Eagle Scout in 1949, and is the recipient of both the Distinguished Eagle Scout Award from the Boy Scouts of America.[2] and their Silver Buffalo Award in 2006.

[edit] Education

Rumsfeld went to Baker Demonstration School for middle school and graduated from New Trier High School. He attended Princeton University on academic and NROTC scholarships (A.B., 1954). In extracurricular activities he was an accomplished amateur wrestler and a member of the Lightweight Football team. While at Princeton his roommate was another future Secretary of Defense Frank Carlucci.

His Princeton University senior thesis was titled: "The Steel Seizure Case of 1952 and Its Effects on Presidential Powers."[3]

In 1956 he attended Georgetown University Law Center but did not graduate.

[edit] Domestic life

Rumsfeld married Joyce H. Pierson (born September 18, 1932) on December 27, 1954. They have three children and six grandchildren. Their three children are psychologist Valerie J. Rumsfeld Richard (born March 3, 1956), homemaker Marcy K. Rumsfeld Walczak (born March 28, 1960), and Internet entrepreneur Donald Nicholas "Nick" Rumsfeld (born June 26, 1967).

Rumsfeld lives in St. Michaels, Maryland in a former plantation home named "Mount Misery." Mount Misery had belonged to Edward Covey a "notorious 'slave breaker'" to whom Frederick Douglass had been sent because he had been considered an "unruly" slave.

[edit] Military service

Rumsfeld served in the U.S. Navy from 1954 to 1957 as an aviator and flight instructor, training in North American SNJ basic trainers and later flying Grumman F9F Panther fighters. In 1957, he transferred to the Ready Reserve and continued his Naval service in flying and administrative assignments as a drilling reservist until 1975. He transferred to the Standby Reserve when he became Secretary of Defense in 1975 and to the Retired Reserve with the rank of Navy Captain in 1989.

[edit] Early political career

In 1957, during the Eisenhower Administration, he served as Administrative Assistant to David S. Dennison Jr., a Congressman representing the 11th district of Ohio. Dennison served one term, losing in the Democratic landslide of 1958. Rumsfeld then moved on to become a staff assistant to Congressman Robert P. Griffin of Michigan.

After a two year stint with investment banking firm A. G. Becker from 1960 to 1962, he was elected to the United States House of Representatives for the 13th Congressional District in Illinois in 1962, at the age of 30, and was re-elected by large majorities in 1964, 1966, and 1968.

In the Congress, he served on the Joint Economic Committee, the Committee on Science and Aeronautics, and the Government Operations Committee, as well as the Subcommittees on Military and Foreign Operations. He was also a co-founder of the Japanese-American Inter-Parliamentary Council.

Rumsfeld has been associated with the Chicago School of Economics, and can be seen in Milton Friedman's PBS series Free to Choose. [4]

Rumsfeld made a brief flirtation with the Presidency in 1988 but never formally announced his candidacy.

[edit] Career

[edit] Nixon Administration

Rumsfeld resigned from Congress in 1969 — his fourth term — to serve in the Nixon Administration as Director of the United States Office of Economic Opportunity, Assistant to the President, and a member of the President's Cabinet (1969-1970); named Counselor to the President in December of 1970, Director of the Economic Stabilization Program; and member of the President's Cabinet (1971-1972).

In 1971 President Nixon was recorded saying about Rumsfeld ".. at least Rummy is tough enough" and "He's a ruthless little bastard. You can be sure of that."[5]

In February of 1973, Rumsfeld left Washington to serve as U.S. Ambassador to the North Atlantic Treaty Organization (NATO) in Brussels, Belgium. He served as the United States' Permanent Representative to the North Atlantic Council and the Defense Planning Committee, and the Nuclear Planning Group. In this responsibility, he represented the United States on wide ranging military and diplomatic matters.

[edit] Ford Administration

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Secretary of Defense Rumsfeld (left) and White House Chief of Staff Dick Cheney (right) meeting with President Gerald Ford, April 1975.
Secretary of Defense Rumsfeld (left) and White House Chief of Staff Dick Cheney (right) meeting with President Gerald Ford, April 1975.

In August 1974, he was called back to Washington, to serve as transition chairman for the new president, Gerald R. Ford. He had been Ford's confidant since their days in the U.S. House, when Ford was House minority leader. Later in Ford's presidency, Rumsfeld became White House Chief of Staff (1974-1975); and the 13th U.S. Secretary of Defense (1975-1977).

During this period he oversaw the transition to an all-volunteer military, and although he supported the Ford administration's efforts at détente, Rumsfeld sought to reverse the gradual decline in the defense budget and to build up U.S. strategic and conventional forces. He noted that trends in comparative U.S.-Soviet military strength had not favored the United States for 15 to 20 years, and that if continued they "would have the effect of injecting a fundamental instability in the world."[6]

Secretary Rumsfeld, seated at the Cabinet table, laughing with President Gerald Ford in 1975.
Secretary Rumsfeld, seated at the Cabinet table, laughing with President Gerald Ford in 1975.

As part of the Ford administration, Rumsfeld helped formulate the White House response to the death of CIA scientist Frank Olson[citation needed].

In 1977, Rumsfeld was awarded the nation's highest civilian award, the Presidential Medal of Freedom.[7]

[edit] Private career

In early 1977 Rumsfeld briefly lectured at the Woodrow Wilson School and Northwestern's Kellogg School of Management, in Evanston, Illinois, USA.

From 1977 to 1985 Rumsfeld served as Chief Executive Officer, President, and then Chairman of G.D. Searle & Company, a worldwide pharmaceutical company based in Skokie, Illinois, whose products included, among others, the oral contraceptive pill Enovid. During his tenure at Searle, Rumsfeld led the company's financial turnaround that in turn earned him awards as the Outstanding Chief Executive Officer in the Pharmaceutical Industry from the Wall Street Transcript (1980) and Financial World (1981). Rumsfeld is believed to have earned around $12 million from Searle's sale to Monsanto.

It was under Rumsfeld that Searle got the Food and Drug Administration's approval for the controversial artificial sweetener, aspartame, which it marketed as NutraSweet.

From 1985 to 1990 he was in private business. During his business career, Rumsfeld continued public service in various posts, including:

  • Member of the President's General Advisory Committee on Arms Control — Reagan Administration (1982 - 1986);
  • President Reagan's Special Envoy on the Law of the Sea Treaty (1982 - 1983);
  • Senior Advisor to President Reagan's Panel on Strategic Systems (1983 - 1984);
  • Member of the U.S. Joint Advisory Commission on U.S./Japan Relations — Reagan Administration (1983 - 1984);
  • President Reagan's Special Envoy to the Middle East (1983 - 1984);
  • Member of the National Commission on the Public Service (1987 - 1990);
  • Member of the National Economic Commission (1988 - 1989);
  • Member of the Board of Visitors of the National Defense University (1988 - 1992);
  • Chairman Emeritus, Defense Contractor, Carlyle Group (1989 - 2005);
  • Member of the Commission on U.S./Japan Relations (1989 - 1991);
  • Member of the Board of Directors for ABB Ltd. (1990 - 2001);
  • FCC's High Definition Television Advisory Committee (1992 - 1993);
  • Chairman, Commission on the Ballistic Missile Threat to the United States (1998 - 1999);
  • Member of the U.S. Trade Deficit Review Commission (1999 - 2000);
  • Member of the Council on Foreign Relations (CFR);
  • Chairman of the U.S. Commission to Assess National Security Space Management and Organization (2000);
  • Honorary Vice-Chancellor of Yale University (2001), honoring Rumsfeld's U.S. foreign policy work.
Rumsfeld, at the time Ronald Reagan's special envoy to the Middle East, meeting with Saddam Hussein during a visit to Baghdad, Iraq in December, 1983, in the midst of the Iran-Iraq War. In later years, this image would be strongly downplayed by Rumsfeld and highlighted by his opponents, as relations with Hussein's regime deteriorated. (Video frame capture; see the complete video here.)
Rumsfeld, at the time Ronald Reagan's special envoy to the Middle East, meeting with Saddam Hussein during a visit to Baghdad, Iraq in December, 1983, in the midst of the Iran-Iraq War. In later years, this image would be strongly downplayed by Rumsfeld and highlighted by his opponents, as relations with Hussein's regime deteriorated. (Video frame capture; see the complete video here.)

Rumsfeld served as Chairman and Chief Executive Officer of General Instrument Corporation from 1990 to 1993. A leader in broadband transmission, distribution, and access control technologies for cable, satellite and terrestrial broadcasting applications, the company pioneered the development of the first all-digital high-definition television (HDTV) technology. After taking the company public and returning it to profitability, Rumsfeld returned to private business in late 1993. From January 1997 until being sworn in as the 21st Secretary of Defense in January 2001, Rumsfeld served as Chairman of Gilead Sciences, Inc. He was also a board member of the RAND Corporation.

[edit] ABB and North Korea

Rumsfeld sat on ABB's board from 1990 to 2001, earning $190,000 a year. ABB is a European engineering giant based in Zürich, Switzerland; formed through the merger between ASEA of Sweden and Brown Boveri of Switzerland. In 2000 this company sold two light water nuclear reactors to KEDO for installation in North Korea, as part of the 1994 agreed framework reached under President Bill Clinton.

The sale of the nuclear technology was a high-profile contract. ABB's then chief executive, Göran Lindahl, visited North Korea in November 1999 to announce ABB's "wide-ranging, long-term cooperation agreement" with the communist government. Rumsfeld's office said that the Secretary of Defense did not "recall it being brought before the board at any time". But ABB spokesman Björn Edlund told Fortune that "board members were informed about this project."

Rumsfeld has also served in executive responsibilities of various local charities across the United States. From 1986 to 1989 he was appointed to serve as United Way Inter-governmental Affairs Director in Washington, D.C..

As a result of his foreign policy achievements as Inter-governmental Affairs Director, he was asked to serve the U.S. State Department. Given the title "foreign policy consultant", he held the role from 1990 to 1993.

[edit] Reagan Administration

During his period as Reagan's Special Envoy to the Middle East (November 1983 – May 1984), Rumsfeld was the main conduit for crucial American military intelligence, hardware and strategic advice to Saddam Hussein, then fighting Iran in the Iran-Iraq war. This policy was adopted when the war began to go strongly in Iran's favor, and it looked as if Iran would overrun Iraq completely. Although the United States was hesitant to support a Soviet client state, the prospect of a greatly expanded Iran outweighed these concerns. When he visited on December 19December 20, 1983, he and Saddam Hussein had a 90-minute discussion that covered Syria's occupation of Lebanon, preventing Syrian and Iranian expansion, preventing arms sales to Iran by foreign countries, increasing Iraqi oil production via a possible new oil pipeline across Jordan. According to declassified U.S. State Department documents Rumsfeld also informed Tariq Aziz (Iraqi Deputy Prime Minister and Foreign Minister) that: "Our efforts to assist were inhibited by certain things that made it difficult for us ... citing the use of chemical weapons."[8]

During his brief bid for the 1988 Republican nomination, Rumsfeld stated that restoring full relations with Iraq was one of his best achievements. This was not a particularly controversial position at the time, when most American politicians considered ties with Iraq an effective bulwark against Iran.

[edit] George H. W. Bush and Clinton years

Rumsfeld's civic activities included service as a member of the National Academy of Public Administration and a member of the boards of trustees of the Gerald R. Ford Foundation, the Eisenhower Exchange Fellowships, the Hoover Institution at Stanford University, and the National Park Foundation. He was also a member of the U.S./Russia Business Forum and Chairman of the Congressional Leadership's National Security Advisory Group.

Rumsfeld was a founder and active member of the Project for the New American Century. He co-signed a January 29, 1998 PNAC letter sent to President Bill Clinton[9]

From January to July 1998 Rumsfeld chaired the 9-member Commission to Assess the Ballistic Missile Threat to the United States. They concluded that Iraq, Iran, and North Korea could develop intercontinental ballistic missile capabilities in five to ten years and that US intelligence would have little warning before such systems were deployed.[10]

[edit] George W. Bush Administration

Rumsfeld is sworn in by David O. Cooke as Secretary of Defense, January 20, 2001.
Rumsfeld is sworn in by David O. Cooke as Secretary of Defense, January 20, 2001.

Rumsfeld was named Defense Secretary soon after President George W. Bush took office in 2001. Bush's selection of Rumsfeld surprised some media commentators, because he had not been seen as particularly close to George W. Bush's father. However, Rumsfeld had held a close relationship with Vice President Dick Cheney from previous White House administrations.

Rumsfeld immediately announced a series of sweeping reviews intended to plot the transformation of the U.S. military into a lighter, more nimble force. These studies, led by Pentagon analyst Andrew Marshall, drew widespread resistance from the military services and members of Congress, who worried that Rumsfeld would cancel pet projects[citation needed].

Donald Rumsfeld with Dick Cheney
Donald Rumsfeld with Dick Cheney

Following the terrorist attacks on September 11, 2001, Rumsfeld led the military planning and execution of the U.S. invasion of Afghanistan and the 2003 invasion of Iraq. Rumsfeld pushed hard to send as small a force as possible to both conflicts, a concept codified as the Rumsfeld Doctrine.

Rumsfeld's plan resulted in a lightning invasion that took Baghdad in well under a month with very few American casualties. Many government buildings, plus major museums, electrical generation infrastructure, and even oil equipment were looted and vandalized during the transition from the fall of Saddam Hussein's regime to the establishment of the Coalition Provisional Authority. Critics further complained that there was no plan to deal with the existing Iraqi armed forces[citation needed]. They were disbanded, leaving hundreds of thousands of armed and unemployed men in the country. A violent insurrection began shortly after the occupation started.

After the German and French governments voiced opposition to invading Iraq, Rumsfeld labeled these countries as part of "Old Europe", implying that countries which supported the war were part of a newer, modern Europe[11].

Donald Rumsfeld and Eritrean President Isaias Afewerki shake hands in Eritrea
Donald Rumsfeld and Eritrean President Isaias Afewerki shake hands in Eritrea

He gives more press conferences than his predecessors. The BBC Radio 4 current affairs program Broadcasting House had been so taken by Rumsfeld's various remarks that it once held a regular slot called "The Donald Rumsfeld sound bite of the Week" in which they played his most amusing comment from that week. Rumsfeld himself is said to have found the slot "hilarious."[citation needed]

Bush retained Rumsfeld after his 2004 presidential re-election, which raised eyebrows among Democrats and some Republicans. December 2004, Rumsfeld came under fire after a "town-hall" meeting with U.S. troops where he responded to a soldier's comments about inferior military equipment by saying "you go to war with the Army you have, not the Army you want."

[edit] September 11, 2001

Rumsfeld's activities during the September 11, 2001 attacks were outlined in a Pentagon press briefing on September 15, 2001. Within 180 minutes of the start of the first hijacking and 120 minutes of American Airlines Flight 11 striking the World Trade Center, Rumsfeld raised the defense condition signaling of the United States offensive readiness to DEFCON 3; the highest it had been since the Arab-Israeli war in 1973.[12]

[edit] Military decisions

Some Republicans called for Rumsfeld's replacement after Bush's re-election due to what was perceived as inadequate troop strength (Rumsfeld Doctrine) used during the invasion of Iraq.

Rumsfeld stirred controversy by quarreling for months with the CIA over who had the authority to fire Hellfire missiles from Predator drones, although according to The 9/11 Commission Report, the armed Predator was not physically ready for deployment until the Spring of 2002.[13]

Daniel Benjamin and Steven Simon note:

These quarrels kept the Predator from being used against al Qaeda.... The delay infuriated the terrorist hunters at the CIA. One individual who was at the center of the action called this episode "typical" and complained that "Rumsfeld never missed an opportunity to fail to cooperate. The fact is, the Secretary of Defense is an obstacle. He has helped the terrorists."[14]

[edit] Prisoner abuse

Rumsfeld vigorously defended the Bush administration's decision to detain alleged illegal enemy combatants without protection under the Third Geneva Convention. The non-applicability of the Geneva Conventions to cover illegal combatants is disputed by international jurists. Critics feel that Rumsfeld should have been held personally responsible for the Abu Ghraib torture and prisoner abuse scandal. Rumsfeld himself said, "These events occurred on my watch as secretary of defense. I am accountable for them."[15] However, military investigations into the matters did not find him responsible for any wrongdoing.

In November 2006, the former US Army Brigadier General Janis Karpinski, in-charge of Abu Ghraib prison until early 2004, told Spain's El Pais newspaper she had seen a letter apparently signed by Rumsfeld which allowed civilian contractors to use techniques such as sleep deprivation during interrogation. "The methods consisted of making prisoners stand for long periods, sleep deprivation ... playing music at full volume, having to sit in uncomfortably ... Rumsfeld authorised these specific techniques." She said that this was contrary to the Geneva Convention and quoted from the same "Prisoners of war who refuse to answer may not be threatened, insulted, or exposed to any unpleasant or disadvantageous treatment of any kind". According to Karpinski, the handwritten signature was above his printed name and in the same handwriting in the margin was written: "Make sure this is accomplished". There have been no comments from either the Pentagon or US Army spokespeople in Iraq on Karpinski's accusations. [16] [17] [18]

[edit] Condolence letters

In December of 2004, Rumsfeld was heavily criticized for using a signing machine instead of personally signing over 1000 letters of condolence to the families of soldiers killed in action in Iraq and Afghanistan. He promised to personally sign all letters in the future. [19] [20]

[edit] Tamiflu

Rumsfeld, then-National Security Advisor Condoleezza Rice, and then-Secretary of State Colin Powell listen to President George W. Bush speak.
Rumsfeld, then-National Security Advisor Condoleezza Rice, and then-Secretary of State Colin Powell listen to President George W. Bush speak.

From January 1997 until being sworn in as the 21st Secretary of Defense in January 2001, Donald Rumsfeld was Chairman of the Board of Gilead Sciences which is the developer of Tamiflu (Oseltamivir) which is used in the treatment of bird flu.[21] Several news sources have published stories implying that Donald Rumsfeld profits from sales of Tamiflu to the U.S. Government while he is in office, although they note that he has recused himself from any decisions involving Gilead and also had the Pentagon's General Counsel issue additional instructions outlining what he could and could not be involved in if there were an avian flu pandemic and the Pentagon had to respond.[22][23]

[edit] War critics

Rumsfeld has come under fire for his remarks at the American Legion's national convention when he accused critics of the Bush administration's Iraq and counter-terrorism policies of "trying to appease a new type of fascism." [24] Also, Rumsfeld claimed that the administration's critics have "moral and intellectual confusion" about what threatens the nation's security and accused them of lacking the courage to fight back.[25][26]

[edit] Calls for resignation

Eight retired generals called for Rumsfeld to resign in early 2006, mostly questioning his military planning and strategic competence.[27][28][29] Rumsfeld rebuffed these criticisms, stating that "out of thousands and thousands of admirals and generals, if every time two or three people disagreed we changed the secretary of defense of the United States, it would be like a merry-go-round."[30] Conservative commentator Patrick J. Buchanan reports that "Washington Post columnist David Ignatius, who travels often to Iraq and supports the war, says that the generals mirror the views of 75 percent of the officers in the field, and probably more."[31] President Bush responded to the criticism by stating that Rumsfeld is "exactly what is needed,"[32] and also defended him in his controversial decider remark.

On November 4, 2006, the Military Times newspapers owned by the Gannett Company, which include the Army Times, Navy Times, Air Force Times, and Marine Corps Times, jointly published an editorial calling for Bush to fire Rumsfeld. It stated:

It is one thing for the majority of Americans to think Rumsfeld has failed. But when the nation’s current military leaders start to break publicly with their defense secretary, then it is clear that he is losing control of the institution he ostensibly leads.... Rumsfeld has lost credibility with the uniformed leadership, with the troops, with Congress and with the public at large. His strategy has failed, and his ability to lead is compromised. And although the blame for our failures in Iraq rests with the secretary, it will be the troops who bear its brunt.[33]

[edit] Resignation

Rumsfeld shakes the President's hand as he announces his resignation, November 8, 2006.
Rumsfeld shakes the President's hand as he announces his resignation, November 8, 2006.

On November 1, 2006, President Bush stated he would stand by Rumsfeld as defense secretary for the length of his term as president. In the November 7 elections, the House and the Senate shifted to Democratic control. One day later, Bush announced Rumsfeld would resign his position as Secretary of Defense. Bush nominated Robert Gates for the position.[34][35][36][37] At a press conference announcing the resignation of Rumsfeld and the nomination of Bob Gates, Bush stated:

"America is safer and the world is more secure because of the service and the leadership of Donald Rumsfeld. As he led the Pentagon in an unprecedented war, Don never took his eye off another vital responsibility, preparing America for the threats that await us as this new century unfolds. He developed a new defense strategy. He established a new Northern Command to protect the homeland, a new Joint Forces Command to focus on transformation, a new Strategic Command to defend against long-range attack, and transformed the U.S. Special Operations Command for the war on terror. He led our efforts to create a new NATO Response Force that allows NATO to deploy rapidly anywhere in the world. He undertook the most sweeping transformation of America's global force posture since the end of World War II. He revitalized America's efforts to develop and deploy ballistic missile defenses, and led a comprehensive review of America's nuclear forces that has allowed us to undertake dramatic reductions in offensive nuclear weapons. Don's work in these areas did not often make the headlines. But the reforms that he has set in motion are historic, and they will enhance the security of the American people for decades to come."[38]

[edit] Lawsuits

[edit] Pentagon database

Several New York teenagers brought a lawsuit against Rumsfeld in federal court over a Pentagon database of potential military recruits. The Pentagon defended the database as critical to national security, but the plaintiffs argue that the database retains information on people as young as 16 in violation of federal privacy laws. New York Civil Liberties Union director Donna Lieberman said, "On the one hand Congress has afforded broad latitude to collect information but on the other hand the Department of Defense has completely flouted those limits."[39]

[edit] Iraq detention

American filmmaker Cyrus Kar from Los Angeles was detained for two months in Iraq without being charged in May 2005 after he visited Iraq to make a documentary film about Cyrus the Great, the Persian king. On July 7, 2006, he sued Rumsfeld and other military officials, calling the government's detention policies unconstitutional. He also claimed that he was hooded, threatened, taunted and insulted by U.S. soldiers. He was alleged to have been smuggling washing machine timers for use in improvised explosive devices in a taxi he was riding in to Baghdad. He was released on July 10, 2005 after his family sued the federal government for violating his civil rights and holding him even after the FBI cleared him of suspicion. The lawsuit said his detention violated his civil rights, Geneva Conventions, as well as International law. "Human rights monitors note that the vast majority of the over 15,000 detainees in U.S. military custody in Iraq have never been charged, tried, provided counsel, or allowed to challenge their detention in court, and over one-fifth of them have been detained for over a year in this manner," the suit states.

[edit] Alleged overseas torture

On March 1, 2005, the American Civil Liberties Union and Human Rights First filed a lawsuit against Rumsfeld in a federal court in Illinois on behalf of eight detainees who they say were subjected to torture and abuse by U.S. forces.

The suit charges Rumsfeld with violations of the U.S. Constitution and international law prohibiting torture and cruel, inhuman, or degrading punishment. The lawsuit also seeks compensatory damages on behalf of the eight men allegedly tortured and abused by U.S. military forces after being captured in Iraq and Afghanistan.[40]

Additionally, the New York-based law firm, Center for Constitutional Rights (CCR) announced Wednesday November 8th 2006 that it plans to file a war crimes lawsuit against Rumsfeld in Germany.[41] CCR had filed a similar complaint to Germany in 2004, but Germany then dismissed the charges. Michael Ratner of CCR claims that Rumsfeld is one of the architects of the U.S. torture program, and that he personally supervised the torture of Mohamed al-Kahtani, which is allegedly documented in the Schmidt report, an internal investigation.[42]

[edit] War Crimes Prosecution

On 14 November 2006 human rights advocate Wolfgang Kaleck, and Michael Ratner and Peter Weiss of the Center for Constitutional Rights brought charges at the German Federal Attorney General (Generalbundesanwalt) against Rumsfeld, former CIA Director George Tenet, Attorney General Alberto Gonzales, Lieutenant General Ricardo Sanchez and a number of other high officials for their involvement in human rights violations in Abu Ghraib in Iraq and Guantanamo Bay. Kaleck, Ratner and Weiss act as advocates for more than 30 human rights organisations as well as 11 former prisoners at Abu Ghraib and Guantanamo. According to a spokesmen of the agency Federal Public Prosecutor Monika Harms will examine the statement of claim now. [43][44]

A similar charge brought by Kaleck, Ratner and Weiss in 2004 had been rejected by German Federal Public Prosecutor Kay Nehm with the explanation that criminal prosecution in the nations of the accused and the victims should be given priority.[45][44]

[edit] Guest appearance on mockumentary

Dark Side of the Moon is a French mockumentary by director William Karel which originally aired on Arte television in 2002 with the title Opération Lune. The basic premise for the film is the theory that the television footage from the Apollo 11 moon-landing was faked and actually recorded in a studio by the CIA with help from director Stanley Kubrick. It features some surprising guest appearances, most notably by Donald Rumsfeld.

[edit] Awards

[edit] Affiliation history

Rumsfeld and Israeli politician Shimon Peres
Rumsfeld and Israeli politician Shimon Peres

[edit] Institutional affiliations

[edit] Government posts, panels, and commissions

[edit] Corporate connections and business interests

[edit] Education

[edit] Intellectual heritage

[edit] See also

[edit] References

  1. ^ Biography: Donald Rumsfeld November 8, 2006
  2. ^ "Scouting magazine ". Scouting 94 (4): 35. September 2006
  3. ^ Princeton University Senior Theses Full Record: Donald Henry Rumsfeld
  4. ^ Free to Choose: Tyranny of Control
  5. ^ Nixon White House conversation 464-12
  6. ^ DefenseLink's Rumsfeld Biography
  7. ^ DefenseLink's Secretary of Defense Biography
  8. ^ George Washington University, National Archives, Iraq, PDF format
  9. ^ Project for the New American Century letter to U.S. President Clinton, 29 January 1998
  10. ^ Report of the Commission to Assess the Ballistic Missile Threat to the United States
  11. ^
  12. ^
  13. ^] (pp. 189-90, 211-214)
  14. ^ Daniel Benjamin and Steven Simon, The Next Attack (New York: Times Books, 2005) ISBN 0-8050-7941-6 p. 161.
  15. ^ "Rumsfeld 'the best'" - CNN
  16. ^ "Rumsfeld okayed Abu Ghraib abuses according to former US general" - CBS News
  17. ^ "Rumsfeld okayed abuses says former U.S. general" - ABC News
  18. ^ - "Rumsfeld okayed abuses says former US Army general" Reuters News
  19. ^ After Outcry, Rumsfeld Says He Will Sign Condolence Letters, Washington Post, December 18, 2004
  20. ^ Rumsfeld sympathy signed by machine, Daily Telegraph, December 20 2004
  21. ^
  22. ^
  23. ^
  24. ^
  25. ^
  26. ^
  27. ^
  28. ^,,3-2138760_2,00.html
  29. ^
  30. ^
  31. ^
  32. ^
  33. ^ "Editorial: Time for Rumsfeld to go", Army Times, 4 November 2006;"Editorial: Time for Rumsfeld to go", Marine Corps Times, 4 November 2006; "Editorial: Time for Rumsfeld to go", Navy Times, 4 November 2006;"Editorial: Time for Rumsfeld to go", Air Force Times, 4 November 2006
  34. ^
  35. ^
  36. ^,2933,217119,00.html
  37. ^ Rumsfeld quitting as defense secretary. Retrieved 8 November 2006.
  38. ^ President Bush Nominates Dr. Robert M. Gates to be Secretary of Defense
  39. ^
  40. ^
  41. ^
  42. ^
  43. ^ Adam Zagorin: Exclusive: Charges Sought Against Rumsfeld Over Prison Abuse. TIME, 10 November 2006
  44. ^ a b Sebastian Wessels: Keine Ruhe für Rumsfeld. jungeWelt, 15 November 2006 (German)
  45. ^ U.S. lawyers file complaint over abuses in Abu Ghraib., 1 Dezember 2004
  46. ^

[edit] External links

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[edit] Works

[edit] Biographies

[edit] Documentary video

[edit] Articles profiling Rumsfeld

Preceded by:
Marguerite S. Church
U.S. Representative of Illinois's 13th Congressional District
Succeeded by:
Phil Crane
Preceded by:
Alexander Haig
White House Chief of Staff
Succeeded by:
Dick Cheney
Preceded by:
James R. Schlesinger
United States Secretary of Defense
Under President Gerald Ford

Succeeded by:
Harold Brown
Preceded by:
William S. Cohen
United States Secretary of Defense
Under President George W. Bush

Succeeded by:
Robert Gates (nominated, not confirmed yet)
Preceded by:
Henry M. Paulson
United States Presidential Line of Succession
6th in line
Succeeded by:
Alberto Gonzales
Preceded by:
Henry M. Paulson
United States order of precedence
as of 2006
Succeeded by:
Alberto Gonzales

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