Rumsfeld aide who planned war quits (TELEGRAPH UK) By Francis Harris in Washington 01/28/05)
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The Pentagon hawk responsible for much of the planning of the war
against Iraq has resigned.
Douglas Feith is the second leading hardliner in America´s campaign
against international terrorism to step down this year.
His resignation follows the departure of John Bolton from the state
department. But the administration´s most prominent hardliners,
Donald Rumsfeld, the defence secretary, and the new secretary of
state, Condoleezza Rice, remain in place.
Mr Feith ignored pleas from Mr Rumsfeld, his boss and close ally, for
him to stay.
A Pentagon spokesman said Mr Feith had tired of the "up before the
kids and go to work, home after they go to bed routine".
The New Yorker magazine last week accused him of working with Israeli
officials to select possible targets for a pre-emptive strike against
Iran´s nuclear programme. The Pentagon strongly denied the report.
His 1,500-strong planning staff, which forms Pentagon policy for the
war on terrorism, is reported to be facing three separate
investigations, one by the FBI and two by congressional committees.
One is looking into claims that classified papers on Iran were leaked
from his staff to Israeli lobbyists and officials.
A congressional committee is also reported to be investigating
whether officials from his staff planned to destabilise the Syrian
regime without presidential approval.
A long-standing friend of Israel and hardline opponent of Saddam
Hussein´s Iraq, Mr Feith sometimes explained the administration´s
thinking more clearly than its official spokesmen.
A month before the invasion of Iraq in 2003 he offered what may have
been its true motivation for war in Iraq: the need to pre-empt action
by rogue states.
Mr Feith, 51, a Washington lawyer, is a protégé of Richard Perle, a
senior Pentagon appointee during the Reagan era who won the
nickname "the Prince of Darkness" for his hawkish views during the
Cold War. (© Copyright of Telegraph Group Limited 2004. 01/28/05)
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