Former United States Secretary of Defense Donald Rumsfeld Has Died at the Age of 88
The decision to fight in Iraq has been a dark chapter in Ramsfield's career; file photo: AP

Quora News WASHINGTON: Former US Secretary of Defense Donald Rumsfeld, an expert bureaucrat and visionary of the modern military, has died at the age of 88.

According to the Dawn newspaper, a statement issued by his family said that he was with his family in Taos, New Mexico at the last moment.

Donald Rumsfeld has held key positions in four US presidents and in corporate America for nearly a quarter of a century.

Rumsfeld was the only person to serve twice as Pentagon chief.

He first served as Pentagon's chief of staff in 1975-77 until he became the youngest official. The next time he took office was in 2001-06 when he was the youngest.

He was also the Republican presidential candidate in 1988, which led to his failure as he held senior positions in the White House, chief of staff, US diplomats and members of Congress.

The decision to fight in Iraq has been a dark chapter in Ramsfield's career that has hampered most of his accomplishments.

After taking office for the second time as Secretary of Defense, on September 11, 2001, suicide bombers attacked the World Trade Center in New York and the Pentagon, pushing the United States into war while the US military was unprepared.

Rumsfeld oversaw the US invasion and the elimination of the Taliban in Afghanistan.

Rumsfeld, meanwhile, became a TV star.

By 2002, the Bush administration's focus had shifted to Iraq, which had nothing to do with the 9/11 attacks.

The US-led invasion of Iraq began in March 2003, with Baghdad rapidly devastated and US and coalition forces soon coming under fire.

Ramsay Field has been widely criticized for failing to assess the situation in Iraq before the invasion.

Donald Rumsfeld twice offered his resignation to President George W. Bush in 2004, following revelations that US troops had abused detainees in Iraq's Abu Ghraib prison.

In November 2006, Democrats took control of Congress over anti-war sentiments, and George W. Bush finally fired Ramsfield.

He left office in December and was replaced by Robert Gates.

Rumsfeld mourners include his wife, three children and seven grandchildren.

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