Speaking to a crowd at the American Legion Convention in Salt Lake City on Tuesday, SECDEF made what would seem to most of us a set of fairly innocuous remarks on the nature of the war we’re in – even drawing some of the same historical analogies such as would be familiar to those who frequent the milblogs. But joining in the on-going scalp hunt, this is how the AP chose to frame those remarks:
Rumsfeld Lashes Out at Bush’s Critics
SALT LAKE CITY, Utah (AP) – Defense Secretary Donald H. Rumsfeld said Tuesday the world faces “a new type of fascism” and likened critics of the U.S. war strategy to those who tried to appease the Nazis.
In unusually explicit terms, Rumsfeld portrayed the Bush administration’s critics as suffering from “moral or intellectual confusion” about what threatens the nation’s security. His remarks amounted to one of his most pointed defenses of President Bush’ war policies and was among his toughest attacks on the president’s critics.
Pretty harsh, yah? Had several of the usual suspects issuing denunciations. Except that, looking over his remarks (the entire text can be found at the DOD Public Affairs website) it’s pretty clear that the AP’s characterization of the Secretary’s words picks a fight with an argument he doesn’t present. The relevant portions are excerpted below: