Rumsfeld predicts moderates will lead Iraq
NICE: US Defence Secretary Donald Rumsfeld on Wednesday predicted that elections in Iraq would result in a moderate leadership similar to that in Pakistan and Afghanistan, but warned that Iraq’s transition to democracy would be tough.
“And we need moderate Muslim leadership in this world to help in this struggle against extremism,” Rumsfeld told US sailors in a speech aboard the USS O’Bannon, a destroyer anchored off this resort on the French Riviera. “We now have (President Pervez) Musharraf in Pakistan, we have Mr (Hamid) Karzai and his team in Afghanistan. We’ll have new leadership in Iraq that will be moderate Muslim leadership in my view,” he said.
Rumsfeld arrived here earlier for an informal meeting of NATO defense ministers Thursday at which he is expected to appeal for more help from European allies in Iraq now that the country has held elections. “I wish I could assure that everything is going to turn out well,” he told the sailors. “But I can’t.” afp