Known and Unknown

Known and Unknown

A Memoir

Book - 2011
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Like Donald Rumsfeld, Known and Unknown pulls no punches.

With the same directness that defined his career in public service, Rumsfeld's memoir is filled with previously undisclosed details and insights about the Bush administration, 9/11, and the wars in Afghanistan and Iraq. It also features Rumsfeld's unique and often surprising observations on eight decades of history- his experiences growing up during the Depression and World War II, his time as a Naval aviator; his service in Congress starting at age 30; his cabinet level positions in the Nixon and Ford White Houses; his assignments in the Reagan administration; and his years as a successful business executive in the private sector.

Rumsfeld addresses the challenges and controversies of his illustrious career, from the unseating of the entrenched House Republican leader in 1965, to helping the Ford administration steer the country away from Watergate and Vietnam, to bruising battles over transforming the military for the 21st century, to the war in Iraq, to confronting abuse at Abu Ghraib and allegations of torture at Guantanamo Bay.

Along the way, he offers his plainspoken, first-hand views and often humorous and surprising anecdotes about some of the world's best known figures, from Margaret Thatcher to Saddam Hussein, from Henry Kissinger to Colin Powell, from Elvis Presley to Dick Cheney, and each American president from Dwight D. Eisenhower to George W. Bush.

Rumsfeld relies not only on his memory but also on previously unreleased and recently declassified documents. Thousands of pages of documents not yet seen by the public will be made available on an accompanying website.

Known and Unknown delivers both a fascinating narrative for today's readers and an unprecedented resource for tomorrow's historians.

Proceeds from the sales of Known and Unknown will go to the veterans charities supported by the Rumsfeld Foundation.

Publisher: New York : Sentinel, 2011
ISBN: 9781595230676
Branch Call Number: 973.924 RUM 2011 B 22
Characteristics: xvi, 815 p. : ill

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n
naturalist
Nov 18, 2015

“Kid, have you rehabilitated yourself?” Arlo Guthrie

EuSei Nov 17, 2015

I remember watching a press conference with Rumsfeld when one of the reporters asked a really stupid question (as they generally do), and Rumsfeld did something I have always wanted to see a politician do, but have never witnessed: he called the reporter out! He said something along the lines of "That's a ridiculous question," answered it briefly anyway, and moved on. And I thought, "God, I love it!" I always watched his press conferences or read them. I noticed he made his points always clear and compelling. Then, I would catch a headline or some story that was in the news cycle and it was clear the media picked one sentence out of an hour long session with Rumsfeld and used it to make “news.” The tone of the media “reports” were in clear contradiction to a plain reading of the transcripts. Most readers of biographies have preconceptions of whether they like a person or don't and will read—if they indeed do read!—with that in mind. Anyone who would take the time to read this book will find Rumsfeld much less of an ideologue than he'd been painted. I thought that it was strange when his "known and unknown" comments received such scorn. It seemed to me it would be difficult to summarize such a profound philosophy in fewer words and with any more clarity. Although Rumsfeld admits to many mistakes, I am glad he did not admit the "known and unknown" comments were among those mistakes! His candor is refreshing and he did not hesitate to call people out, but he was also very honest about his mistakes and missteps. And when criticizing someone, he disagreed with their performance/policy, refraining from ad hominem attacks (something reviewers should for a change). If the reader can leave aside partisanship, he will notice that in everything he writes Rumsfeld is fair and restrained and attempts to present the facts accurately. This is no attempt to settle scores, just a wonderful read. Give it a try.

n
naturalist
Nov 08, 2015

“The Push To Charge Bush, Cheney and Rumsfeld For CIA Torture And War Crimes – The European Center for Constitutional and Human Rights has been making the case for heavyweight members of the European Union to bring war crimes charges against members of the former administration.”
by By M.A. Hussein, . . . Counter Current News, . . . March 10, 2015 . . .
http://www.mintpressnews.com/the-push-to-charge-bush-cheney-and-rumsfeld-for-cia-torture-and-war-crimes/203212/

EuSei Oct 30, 2015

I remember watching a press conference with Rumsfeld when one of the reporters asked a really stupid question (as they generally do), and Rumsfeld did something I have always wanted to see a politician do, but have never witnessed: he called the reporter out! He said something along the lines of "That's a ridiculous question," answered it briefly anyway, and moved on. And I thought, "God, I love it!" I always watched his press conferences or read them. I noticed he made his points always clear and compelling. Then, I would catch a headline or some story that was in the news cycle and it was clear the media picked one sentence out of an hour long session with Rumsfeld and used it to make “news.” The tone of the media “reports” were in clear contradiction to a plain reading of the transcripts. Most readers of biographies have preconceptions of whether they like a person or don't and will read—if they indeed do read!—with that in mind. Anyone who would take the time to read this book will find Rumsfeld much less of an ideologue than he'd been painted. I thought that it was strange when his "known and unknown" comments received such scorn. It seemed to me it would be difficult to summarize such a profound philosophy in fewer words and with any more clarity. Although Rumsfeld admits to many mistakes, I am glad he did not admit the "known and unknown" comments were among those mistakes! His candor is refreshing and he did not hesitate to call people out, but he was also very honest about his mistakes and missteps. And when criticizing someone, he disagreed with their performance/policy, refraining from ad hominem attacks (something reviewers should for a change). If the reader can leave aside partisanship, he will notice that in everything he writes Rumsfeld is fair and restrained and attempts to present the facts accurately. This is no attempt to settle scores, just a wonderful read. Give it a try.

d
darlenestrom
Feb 18, 2014

Should most certainly be tried for war crimes, along with Bush. But it will never happen. The rich have such a special place, that makes them quite untouchable. He made his billions by pushing onto the public NutraSweet and orange Metamucil.

t
TheSponge
Mar 03, 2011

An interesting read for political junkies....

In a famous press briefing, Rumsfeld once remarked that "there are also unknown unknowns . . . things we do not know we don't know."

His book makes us realize just how much we didn't know!!! And it reminded me how lucky I am to be Canadian!

debwalker Feb 08, 2011

In a preview of Known and Unknown, the memoir by Bush administration secretary of defense Donald Rumsfeld (Sentinel) that appears next week, the New York Times wrote that the author made the following newsworthy points:
• Only 15 days after the September 11 terrorist attacks, President Bush asked Rumsfeld to review and revise war plans involving Iraq.
• Rumsfeld never rejected "formal" requests from commanders for more soldiers to invade Iraq in 2003.
• Rumsfeld was against the buildings of "a larger prison" at Guantanamo Bay, Cuba, and noted that the Bush administration transferred some 500 prisoners from the prison.
• Rumsfeld's approved "enhanced interrogation techniques" were not as severe as those used by the CIA--for example, he did not approve waterboarding.
• Rumsfeld criticized the Bush and the National Security Council for often ending meetings either without determining goals or without deciding how to reach stated goals.
• Rumsfeld criticized Colin Powell and Condoleezza Rice for "interagency feuding."
• Rumsfeld criticized L. Paul Bremer, the "viceroy of Iraq," for delaying the transfer of power to Iraqis and for bypassing the Defense Department and State Department.

k
Keogh
Feb 08, 2011

One wonders if Rummy will admit to how many lawyers have met with "unfortunate accidents" while out with Dick Cheney.

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Mee2 Nov 07, 2015

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EuSei Nov 04, 2015

EuSei thinks this title is suitable for 13 years and over

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