Rumsfeld: ‘If You’re Going to Do Something, You Ought to Do Something That Has Value’

Former Sec. Def.: President Obama lacks clarity and vision on Syria

• September 4, 2013 10:37 am


Former Secretary of Defense Donald Rumsfeld criticized President Obama's "lack of clarity and vision" on foreign policy Wednesday on "Fox & Friends."

Rumsfeld said Obama's record of traveling to Las Vegas after Benghazi, insisting on calling the Fort Hood shooting workplace violence, and golfing during the Syrian debate all evidence weak and detached leadership.

With respect to a prospective military strike on Syria by President Obama, Rumsfeld denounced the limited scope of President Obama's stated intentions.

The former secretary of defense explained military action without a corresponding intention to change the circumstances on the ground leaves many in the country and Congress "confused":

GRETCHEN CARLSON: You've been on record as saying you believe President Obama is the weakest president in your adult lifetime. Is he living up to your comment with regard to his actions on Syria as well?

DONALD RUMSFELD: I think — the essence of leadership really is clarity and a vision. There hasn't been one. To the extent someone goes to Las Vegas during the Benghazi problems and plays golf in the middle of this debate over what to do with respect to Syria and insists on calling what happened at Fort Hood "workplace violence," I think the signals that go out lack clarity and lack a vision. My view is that we've had over 100,000 people dead in Syria over the last year or two. Apparently I found Secretary Kerry's presentation persuasive and forceful. My concern is it seems to me if you're going to do something, you ought to do something that has a value and has a purpose rather than sending signals out that what we're going to do won't be much, it won't last long, and it won't end up with any changed circumstance on the ground. I think that's unfortunate and I think that is reflective in the fact that the American people are confused by it, the Congress is confused, and clearly he doesn't have the kind of support that President Bush had with respect to his military action.

Published under: Donald Rumsfeld, Middle East, Syria, Video