Rumsfeld tries to dismiss talk of guerrilla war

John O'Neill johnfergaloneill at eircom.net
Tue Jul 1 17:27:28 MDT 2003


Rumsfeld tries to dismiss talk of guerrilla war



  US: US Defence Secretary Mr Donald Rumsfeld yesterday warned that "various
types of attacks" against US-led forces in Iraq would continue, but refused
to categorise the assailants as guerrillas or to predict how long they would
continue. From Conor O'Clery in New York

The forces opposing American and British troops were looters, former Iraqi
prisoners, remnants of the Saddam Hussein regime, "busloads of people" who
came in to Iraq including Syrians, and people "influenced by Iran", he told
a Pentagon briefing.

"We're either going to capture or kill them," he said. "The problem will be
dealt with over time as the Iraqis resume more and more responsibility for
their own country." The US would put pressure on all five groups, he said,
but no one raid would deal with the problem. The US is conducting sweeps of
areas in Iraq where attacks have been most frequent.

Though speaking with his usual abundant self-confidence, Mr Rumsfeld was put
on the defensive by repeated questions about the growing perception among
Americans that a guerrilla war has started and that the United States is in
a quagmire.

A total of 20 US personnel have died in armed hostilities since President
Bush declared major combat over on May 1st, according to the Pentagon tally
on Friday. Two missing Americans have been found dead since.

CNN reporter Jamie McIntyre asked if attacks in Iraq amounted to a
dictionary definition of guerrilla war as "paramilitary operations conducted
in enemy-held or hostile territories by irregular indigenous forces".

Mr Rumsfeld replied: "It doesn't fit what's going on" and said the attackers
"are functioning more like terrorists".

He denied that Iraq was a "quagmire" with no way out as many commentators
have claimed. "It isn't Vietnam, it's a different time, a different era, a
different place," he said. What was taking place was aimed at getting on a
path "to something approximating civil society".

On the failure to find Saddam Hussein or his two sons, Mr Rumsfeld admitted
"the absence of closure is unhelpful".

The Defence Secretary gave few new details about the incident last week when
US forces attacked a convoy at the Syrian border. Of 20 people "captured"
some 17 had been released and five Syrian border guards injured by American
forces had been returned to Syria, he said.
Rumsfeld tries to dismiss talk of guerrilla war



  US: US Defence Secretary Mr Donald Rumsfeld yesterday warned that "various
types of attacks" against US-led forces in Iraq would continue, but refused
to categorise the assailants as guerrillas or to predict how long they would
continue. From Conor O'Clery in New York

The forces opposing American and British troops were looters, former Iraqi
prisoners, remnants of the Saddam Hussein regime, "busloads of people" who
came in to Iraq including Syrians, and people "influenced by Iran", he told
a Pentagon briefing.

"We're either going to capture or kill them," he said. "The problem will be
dealt with over time as the Iraqis resume more and more responsibility for
their own country." The US would put pressure on all five groups, he said,
but no one raid would deal with the problem. The US is conducting sweeps of
areas in Iraq where attacks have been most frequent.

Though speaking with his usual abundant self-confidence, Mr Rumsfeld was put
on the defensive by repeated questions about the growing perception among
Americans that a guerrilla war has started and that the United States is in
a quagmire.

A total of 20 US personnel have died in armed hostilities since President
Bush declared major combat over on May 1st, according to the Pentagon tally
on Friday. Two missing Americans have been found dead since.

CNN reporter Jamie McIntyre asked if attacks in Iraq amounted to a
dictionary definition of guerrilla war as "paramilitary operations conducted
in enemy-held or hostile territories by irregular indigenous forces".

Mr Rumsfeld replied: "It doesn't fit what's going on" and said the attackers
"are functioning more like terrorists".

He denied that Iraq was a "quagmire" with no way out as many commentators
have claimed. "It isn't Vietnam, it's a different time, a different era, a
different place," he said. What was taking place was aimed at getting on a
path "to something approximating civil society".

On the failure to find Saddam Hussein or his two sons, Mr Rumsfeld admitted
"the absence of closure is unhelpful".

The Defence Secretary gave few new details about the incident last week when
US forces attacked a convoy at the Syrian border. Of 20 people "captured"
some 17 had been released and five Syrian border guards injured by American
forces had been returned to Syria, he said.

Asked whether US intelligence had believed Saddam Hussein was on the convoy,
he said: "I don't know we have got perfect visibility into that question."




© The Irish Times

Asked whether US intelligence had believed Saddam Hussein was on the convoy,
he said: "I don't know we have got perfect visibility into that question."




© The Irish Times




  US: US Defence Secretary Mr Donald Rumsfeld yesterday warned that "various
types of attacks" against US-led forces in Iraq would continue, but refused
to categorise the assailants as guerrillas or to predict how long they would
continue. From Conor O'Clery in New York

The forces opposing American and British troops were looters, former Iraqi
prisoners, remnants of the Saddam Hussein regime, "busloads of people" who
came in to Iraq including Syrians, and people "influenced by Iran", he told
a Pentagon briefing.

"We're either going to capture or kill them," he said. "The problem will be
dealt with over time as the Iraqis resume more and more responsibility for
their own country." The US would put pressure on all five groups, he said,
but no one raid would deal with the problem. The US is conducting sweeps of
areas in Iraq where attacks have been most frequent.

Though speaking with his usual abundant self-confidence, Mr Rumsfeld was put
on the defensive by repeated questions about the growing perception among
Americans that a guerrilla war has started and that the United States is in
a quagmire.

A total of 20 US personnel have died in armed hostilities since President
Bush declared major combat over on May 1st, according to the Pentagon tally
on Friday. Two missing Americans have been found dead since.

CNN reporter Jamie McIntyre asked if attacks in Iraq amounted to a
dictionary definition of guerrilla war as "paramilitary operations conducted
in enemy-held or hostile territories by irregular indigenous forces".

Mr Rumsfeld replied: "It doesn't fit what's going on" and said the attackers
"are functioning more like terrorists".

He denied that Iraq was a "quagmire" with no way out as many commentators
have claimed. "It isn't Vietnam, it's a different time, a different era, a
different place," he said. What was taking place was aimed at getting on a
path "to something approximating civil society".

On the failure to find Saddam Hussein or his two sons, Mr Rumsfeld admitted
"the absence of closure is unhelpful".

The Defence Secretary gave few new details about the incident last week when
US forces attacked a convoy at the Syrian border. Of 20 people "captured"
some 17 had been released and five Syrian border guards injured by American
forces had been returned to Syria, he said.

Asked whether US intelligence had believed Saddam Hussein was on the convoy,
he said: "I don't know we have got perfect visibility into that question."




© The Irish Times






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