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Losing faith

I'm going to add my voice to the growing chorus of people calling for Rumsfeld's resignation. Many of these people, particularly some Republicans, view Rumsfeld as a sacrificial lamb: "it's either his job now or Bush's in November". I think there's more to it than that. I think Secretary Rumsfeld bears serious, direct responsibility for a number of the failures in this war.

I wasn't so keen on the Rumsfeld appointment after Bush was elected, but I was reassured, at first, by his efforts to modernize our armed services, as well as a number of other positive initiatives. He carried a good idea too far, however, and prized the realization of his vision of a lightweight, ultramodern military for the 21st century above all else. Everyone should now agree that he seriously underestimated the commitment in terms of "boots on the ground" necessary to stage this occupation, much less to put down a growing insurgency. But I can forgive that. What I cannot forgive is the DoD's obstinate refusal to address, or even acknowledge this miscalculation.

It's not a stretch to say that this failure, in part, ultimately led to the atrocities in Abu Ghraib. Prisons were woefully understaffed, largely by reservists and other servicemen who lacked MP training, and there was an over reliance on the use of private contractors. I still believe the war and peace in Iraq are both winnable, but it cannot be done on the cheap. Grave damage has already been done to our war effort. Let's not inflict any more.

Rumsfeld must go, and the sooner the better.