President Bush Leads Pentagon Farewell to Rumsfeld

By: Associated Press
By: Associated Press

President Bush will be there this afternoon as the Pentagon rolls out a full-honors goodbye ceremony for Donald Rumsfeld.

He's leaving after six stormy years as defense secretary, being replaced Monday by Robert Gates. Bush tapped the former CIA director after last month's elections, saying he wanted to bring "fresh eyes" to the troubled mission in Iraq.

Rumsfeld has been condemned by critics as the architect of a disastrous war of choice. But in a broadcast good-bye to the troops, he defends the conflicts in both Iraq and Afghanistan, calling them "historic chapters in the saga of human freedom."

Rumsfeld also tells the nation's service men and women that serving with them has been the "highest honor" of his life.


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