Why Rumsfeld got the axe

... and why Bob Gates got Rummy's job.


Rumsfeld's Mysterious Resignation
By Robert Parry
August 17, 2007

The disclosure that Defense Secretary Donald Rumsfeld resigned on Nov. 6, 2006 - the day
before the election, not the day after as previously thought - means that he was pushed out
of his job the same day he suggested a de-escalation of the Iraq War.

When Rumsfeld's resignation was announced on Nov. 8, with both his resignation letter and his
de-escalation memo still secret, it was widely assumed in Washington political circles that
President George W. Bush was reacting to the stinging Republican electoral defeat on Nov. 7
and was appointing Robert Gates as an olive branch to the Democrats.

The reality now appears to be almost the exact opposite. Bush was preparing for an Iraq War
escalation and was looking for a fresh face as Defense Secretary to buy him the necessary time
to accomplish this extraordinary political maneuver. Bush also may have recognized the
damage that might have come if Rumsfeld's war doubts became known.

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