• United States



by Dave Gradijan

Defense Secretary Rumsfeld Resigns

Nov 08, 20062 mins
CSO and CISOData and Information Security

President George W. Bush told the press Wednesday that Defense Secretary Donald Rumsfeld is stepping down and will be replaced by former CIA Director Robert Gates, The Washington Post reports.

Rumsfeld, considered the main architect of the war in Iraq, notified officials one day after the Republicans lost control of the House, and possibly the Senate, in midterm elections. The Post reports that surveys at polling places said that opposition to the war was a significant factor to the Democratic victory.

Before the election, Bush declared that Rumsfeld would remain at the Pentagon throughout the end of his term while he was campaigning to save the Republican majority, the Post reports. But on Wednesday, Bush said he and Rumsfeld agreed that “the timing is right for new leadership” at the Pentagon.

In recent months, Rumsfeld’s support in Congress has slowly eroded, the Post reports. Rep. Nancy Pelosi, D-Calif., the House speaker in waiting, said at her first post-election news conference that Bush should replace the top civilian leadership at the Pentagon.

The Post reports that Senate Majority Leader Bill Frist, who had intervened in the past to shore up Rumsfeld, said, “Washington must now work together in a bipartisan way—Republicans and Democrats—to outline the path to success in Iraq.”

According to the article, Gates, who will take Rumsfeld’s place, is the president of Texas A&M University and a close friend of the Bush family. He served as CIA director for Bush’s father from 1991 until 1993. He first joined the CIA in 1966 and has served in the intelligence community through six presidencies.

His nomination must now be confirmed by the Senate.

Compiled by Paul Kerstein,

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