Rumsfeld Says Iraq Not In Civil War
March 7, 2006 -- U.S. Defense Secretary Donald Rumsfeld has rejected suggestions Iraq is engulfed in a civil war and accused media of exaggerating the severity of the current situation there.
U.S. Secretary of Defense Rumsfeld rejected suggestions that Iraq is in a civil war (file photo) (epa)
Rumsfeld, speaking at a Pentagon briefing today, said Iraqi leaders would not allow the country to plunge into civil war.
"[Iraqi leaders] have to be fully aware that if this does not work, they and all of the people who have supported them lose everything, if this turned into a civil war, and they can't want that," Rumsfeld said. "They want just the opposite and they've demonstrated the courage to show that they want just the opposite."
Hundreds of people were killed in sectarian violence sparked by the February 22 bombing of a major Shi'ite shrine in Samarra.
Rumsfeld also said Iranian revolutionary guards were infiltrating into Iraq and warned Tehran it was making an "error in judgment" by allowing that.
(Reuters, AP, AFP)