According to the statement by his family, Donald Rumsfeld, the former Defense Secretary, died at the age of eighty-eight. The statement read that it is a deep sadness that they share the death news of Donald Rumsfeld. Moreover, it adds that history may remember him for his extraordinary services of more than sixty years of public service, but for those who knew him best and whose lives changed as a result. The country will remember his unwavering love for his nation.
Donald Rumsfeld, the secretary of defense for Presidents Gerald R. Ford and George W. Bush has passed today at the age of 88.
On April 11, 1968, then Congressman Rumsfeld attended the signing of the Civil Rights Bill of 1968.
Yoichi Okamoto photo pic.twitter.com/WNDmQPjCny
— LBJ Library (@LBJLibrary) June 30, 2021
Rumsfeld served as the secretary of Defense during the Republican governments of former U.S. Presidents Gerald Ford and George W. Bush; he also oversaw the American response to the terrorist attacks of 11th September 2001. After the attacks, he directed a United States military attack on Afghanistan that brought the fall over of the Taliban, who protected Osama bin Laden and other leaders of al Qaeda.
Moreover, after two years, the former defense secretary oversaw the American attack on Iraq, a move intended to remove then-Iraqi President Saddam Hussein (late). Rumsfeld also warned of the increasing arsenal of Iraqi weapons under the leadership of Saddam, but no such weapons discovered. Initially, he earned praise for bringing the U.S. military into conflict, but later the world criticized him as the country grew weary of the Iraq War.
Abu Ghraib Jail and Guantanamo Bay Controversary
In 2004, Rumsfeld faced criticism after photographs emerged of American soldiers abusing Iraqi detainees held at Abu Gharib jail in Baghdad. He personally allowed harsh investigation techniques for prisoners and later supervised the opening of the detention camp at the United States naval base at Guantanamo Bay, Cuba, where they tortured foreign terrorist suspects.
However, in 2006, Rumsfeld resigned as Secretary of Defense, and then- Central Intelligence Agency Director Robert Gates replaced him. In his biography, “Known and Unknown,” he defended his handling of the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan. Later in “Rumsfeld’s Rules,” he wrote that, “if you are not slammed, you may not be doing much.”
Before leading the Pentagon, Rumsfeld served as ambassador to NATO during the rule of former U.S. President Richard Nixon. Whereas under the rule of Ford, he served first as White House chief of staff and then as secretary of Defense, the youngest American ever to lead the country’s largest federal agency.
In January 2021, he penned a letter along with the nine other living former U.S. secretaries of Defense warning that the United States military should have no role in defining the general election result. The letter came as then-Republican President Donald Trump refused to concede power to then-President-elect Joe Biden in the 2020 election and made untrue claims about extensive voter fraud.
Praise and Criticism on Donald Rumsfeld Death
Benjamin Netanyahu tweeted that he saddened to hear the death news of Donald Rumsfeld, a staunch supporter of Israel and an American patriot who understood the need for bold leadership in the world war against terror.
Saddened to hear about the passing of Donald Rumsfeld, an American patriot and a staunch supporter of Israel who understood the need for bold leadership in the global war against terror.
— Benjamin Netanyahu (@netanyahu) July 1, 2021
On the other hand, several officials and social media users criticized his shameless role of Rumsfeld. For example, Mehdi Hasan, a host of the Mehdi Hassan Show at MSNBC, tweeted those hundreds of thousands of people killed in the Iraq war, including over four thousand United States troops, and Rumsfeld was a major driving force behind that disastrous war.
“100s of 1000s of people were killed in Iraq, including more than 4,000 U.S. troops, and Donald Rumsfeld was a major driving force behind that disastrous war.”
My commentary marking Donald Rumsfeld’s death & why it’s important to be honest – watch/share:pic.twitter.com/uBaDRloPNV
— Mehdi Hasan (@mehdirhasan) July 1, 2021