先月の訪英中、コンドリーザ・ライス米国務長官（Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice）が「我々は戦術的な誤り、それも非常に多くの誤りを犯した」（"I know we've made tactical errors - thousands of them, I'm sure," ）とイラク戦争について発言したことに対し、ドナルド・ラムズフェルド国防長官（Defense Secretary Donald H. Rumsfeld）が反論。「ライス氏は戦争というものがわかっちゃいない」（I guess it's a lack of understanding, at least my understanding, of what warfare is about."）と批判した。
Rumsfeld Challenges Rice on 'Tactical Errors' in Iraq [Washington Post]
"Why? Because the enemy's got a brain; the enemy watches what you do and then adjusts to that, so you have to constantly adjust and change your tactics, your techniques and your procedures," Rumsfeld told interviewer Scott Hennen, according to a Defense Department transcript. "If someone says, well, that's a tactical mistake, then I guess it's a lack of understanding, at least my understanding, of what warfare is about."
Rumsfeld's questioning of Rice's comment came amid long-standing tensions between their departments over the war in Iraq and other issues. Rumsfeld and the Pentagon have been criticized by members of Congress and even some retired generals for missteps in Iraq, such as failing to anticipate the insurgency.
Rumsfeld and Rice fall out over war tactics [Guardian]
The row has come at a time when public faith in the Republicans' ability to defend the country is at an all -time low. An AP/Ipsos poll published yesterday found that Americans no longer saw Republicans as any better than Democrats on defence, their flagship issue for decades. Mr Bush also recorded his lowest rating in that poll since taking office, with only 36% of respondents saying he was doing a good job.
The White House was on the defensive once more yesterday over legal documents alleging that Mr Bush had broken his ban on leaking classified information to bolster the case for war in 2003.
The White House spokesman, Scott McClellan, said he could not talk about the documents as they were part of a court case involving a former vice-presidential aide, Lewis "Scooter" Libby. But Mr McClellan said the president sometimes found it necessary to "declassify information in the public interest".
Meanwhile Ms Rice was under pressure to explain her "tactical errors" remark.
Guardian が指摘しているように、現在アメリカでは、ブッシュ大統領が米中央情報局（ＣＩＡ）工作員身元漏洩を「承認していた」とのルイス・リビー前副大統領首席補佐官（Lewis "Scooter" Libby）の証言、並びに訴訟関連文書が公開され、米政権は突き上げを食らっている状態──スコット・マクレラン報道官はいつもの弁舌で切り抜けられるのだろうか？
こんな最中に起こった、ライスＶＳラムズフェルドの「戦争論」（what warfare is about）対決だ。
- 作者: Rowan Scarborough
- 出版社/メーカー: Regnery Publishing
- 発売日: 2004/01/01
- メディア: ハードカバー
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