Rumsfeld Promises To Defeat The Taliban After Claiming In 2002 It Was Defeated

Today Secretary of Defense Donald Rumsfeld held a press conference with Afghan President Hamid Karzai and promised that the Taliban will be defeated:

At a joint news conference with Afghan President Hamid Karzai, Rumsfeld said militants “don’t want to see a country like Afghanistan have a successful democracy. They won’t succeed.”

Yet for the past four years, Bush administration officials — including Rumsfeld — have been insisting that the United States has already defeated the Taliban.

Rumsfeld, 12/18/02:

KING: What’s the current situation in Afghanistan?

RUMSFELD: It is encouraging. They have elected a government through the Loya Jirga process. The Taliban are gone. The al Qaeda are gone.

President Bush echoed Rumsfeld’s comments in Sept. 2004, saying the “Taliban no longer is in existence.”

— Geoff Miller