Dear Democracy Now! Visitor: We are an independent, ad-free daily news program that serves millions of viewers and listeners each month. In this US election year, Democracy Now! is more important than ever. For 20 years, we’ve put a spotlight on corporate and government abuses of power. We lift up the stories of ordinary people working to make change in extraordinary times. We do all of this with just a fraction of the budget and staff of a commercial news show. We do it without ads, corporate sponsorship or government funding. How is this possible? Only with your support. A generous funder will match your donation dollar for dollar if you donate right now. That means when you give $10, your donation will be worth $20. Pretty exciting, right? So, if you've been waiting to make your contribution to Democracy Now!, today is your day. It takes just a couple of minutes to make sure that Democracy Now! is there for you every day.

Your Donation: $

War Secretary Donald Rumsfeld Reportedly Rejected Advice From Top Pentagon Planners On How to Invade Iraq: Former Marine & UN Weapons Inspector Scott Ritter Explains Why the U.S. May Lose the War

March 31, 2003


War Secretary Donald Rumsfeld repeatedly rejected advice from top Pentagon planners that substantially more troops would be needed to fight a war in Iraq. This according to a report by Seymour Hersh in the New Yorker magazine.

Rumsfeld insisted at least six times in the run-up to the invasion that the proposed number of ground troops be sharply reduced and got his way.

He also miscalculated the level of Iraqi resistance and overruled advice from war commander Gen. Tommy Franks to delay the invasion until troops who were denied access through Turkey could find another route.

And the Washington Post is reporting that more than a dozen officers interviewed, including a senior officer in Iraq, said Rumsfeld took significant risks by leaving key units in the United States and Germany at the start of the war. That resulted in an invasion force that is too small, strung out, underprotected, undersupplied and awaiting tens of thousands of reinforcements who will not get there for weeks.

Current and former U.S. military officers are blaming Rumsfeld and his aides saying the civilian leaders "micromanaged" the deployment plan out of mistrust of the generals and an attempt to prove their own theory that a light, maneuverable force could handily defeat Iraqi President Saddam Hussein.

Rumsfeld yesterday repeatedly denied the reports on the Sunday talk shows, insisting the war is going as planned.

We are now joined by Scott Ritter who has predicted the U.S. will lose the war.

  • Scott Ritter, former weapons inspector and US marine. In a recent interview on Irish radio he warned the US will lose the war with Iraq. Ritter said: "We find ourselves... facing a nation of 23 million, with armed elements numbering around 7 million —who are concentrated at urban areas. We will not win this fight. America will loose this war."

Related link:

The original content of this program is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial-No Derivative Works 3.0 United States License. Please attribute legal copies of this work to Some of the work(s) that this program incorporates, however, may be separately licensed. For further information or additional permissions, contact us.