PEEK

Rumsfeld Initially Said Iraq Was "Off-limits" for New Biography

President Bush has similarly been trying to erase Iraq from his legacy.

Washington Post reporter Bradley Graham has a new biography out on Donald Rumsfeld called “By His Own Rules.” According to a review in the New York Times, Graham “goes out of his way to give Mr. Rumsfeld the benefit of the doubt,” but ultimately concludes that the former Defense Secretary was “neglectful” in planning for post-war Iraq. However, Rumsfeld originally refused to talk about Iraq at all:

Mr. Graham writes that Mr. Rumsfeld initially “put talk about Iraq off limits” when he agreed to be interviewed for this book, and while he “relented and addressed a number of aspects of the war” in their final interview in late 2008, his remarks in this area aren’t terribly illuminating for the reader.

President Bush has similarly been trying to erase Iraq from his legacy. A recent five-minute promotional video for his presidential library had just one mention of Iraq (and a full 35 seconds of clips of 9/11 and Bush’s subsequent reaction). Bush’s official bio on his presidential library doesn’t have a single mention of Iraq either.

Amanda Terkel is Deputy Research Director at the Center for American Progress and serves as Deputy Editor for The Progress Report and ThinkProgress.org at the Center for American Progress.
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