From a Washington Times interview. (He usually comes up with some real whoppers when he's talking to a friendly interviewer.)This is right after it was anounced we had lost 1000 troops over there so far. (And a 1000 injured for the month of August.)
How is it going in Iraq, you might ask...
"I feel generally quite good about how things are going there," he said. "Needless to say, you can't feel good about it when you've lost over a thousand people." [Yeah, there is that.]
"If I had to grade it so far, I'd probably give it a B-plus, pretty good, and maybe an A in interaction and maybe a B in outcome," Mr. Rumsfeld said. "But it's a tough business." [I wish I had him in high school.]
Asked whether the enemy is weaker, he said, "It's hard to say that when you've just gone through a week or two where you've peaked in terms of the number of incidents. And my guess is they see they're losing. Does that mean that the pain is going to go down? Not necessarily.
It may mean that it'll go up. It may mean between now and an Iraqi election and Iraqi constitution that they will be even more desperate." [Yeah, they're real desperate these days.]
He added, "There are people opposing the coalition, and they're getting pounded. And they have been getting pounded. The solution to that of course, if they don't want to get killed, is to stop terrorizing the Iraqi people."
On to Tehran!
Defense Secretary Donald H. Rumsfeld charged yesterday that Iran is fueling the deadly insurgency in Iraq with money and fighters.
Asked for details yesterday on Iranian meddling, Mr. Rumsfeld said, "They have put people in there. They have put money in there.
"By 'they,' I'm not going to say which element of the government or whether it's even known to the government. But money has come in from Iran. People have come in from Iran. And it's a very difficult thing to stop," he said.
"Iran is a country that is not part of the civilized world in terms of its behavior." [And we are. What about Mr. Chalabi spying for the Iranians?]
Asked whether Iran is funding Sheik al-Sadr, Mr. Rumsfeld said, "There's a lot of speculation to that effect."
"The problem of proliferation and the problem of terror and the problem of dealing with a country that's separated itself from the civilized community is that those are the kind of things that require the cooperation of a lot of countries," he said.
"And when you have countries of the world that are not willing to participate in an organized effort to try to persuade a country to behave in a civilized way, it encourages them simply to continue on its merry way. And that's a problem," Mr. Rumsfeld said.
On Iraq, Mr. Rumsfeld said he cannot say whether the war has reached a "tipping point" in favor of the coalition, which includes about 140,000 U.S. troops.
Still, he contended, "I think the country is vastly better off than it was a year ago." [A year ago we had only lost a couple hundred troops.]