Saturday, September 09, 2006

Rumsfeld on Iraq in 2003: "We won't stay."

The Washington Monthly: "'HE WOULD FIRE THE NEXT PERSON THAT SAID THAT'....Today, via Orin Kerr, comes a remarkable interview with Brigadier General Mark Scheid, chief of the Logistics War Plans Division after 9/11, and one of the people with primary responsibility for war planning. Shortly after the invasion of Afghanistan, he says, Donald Rumsfeld told his team to start planning for war in Iraq, but not to bother planning for a long stay:

'The secretary of defense continued to push on us ... that everything we write in our plan has to be the idea that we are going to go in, we're going to take out the regime, and then we're going to leave,' Scheid said. 'We won't stay.'

Scheid said the planners continued to try 'to write what was called Phase 4,' or the piece of the plan that included post-invasion operations like occupation.

Even if the troops didn't stay, 'at least we have to plan for it,' Scheid said.

'I remember the secretary of defense saying that he would fire the next person that said that,' Scheid said. 'We would not do planning for Phase 4 operations, which would require all those additional troops that people talk about today."

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