Ginni Thomas

Leaders with Ginni Thomas: Donald Rumsfeld, part 2

Ginni Thomas Contributor
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Less than a month away from the tenth anniversary of the 9/11 attacks on the United States, former Defense Secretary Donald Rumsfeld speaks with an insider’s voice.

Rumsfeld’s life — all 79 years of it — spans much of our nation’s modern history. His public service has carried America through times of national crisis, including 9/11, the cold war, and, no doubt, national security near-misses that we will simply never know about.

On June 10 we aired part one of Rumsfeld’s interview with TheDC’s Ginni Thomas. Today we bring you the second half.

Ginni and Rumsfeld discussed his best-selling autobiography, “Known and Unknown,” its unique online database of memos and documents now available to all of us, his humble view from assorted perches of power, the growing importance of cyber wars to the United States, and much more.

How has Washington, D.C. changed since you first got here?

“Television … money … gerrymandering”


How will “cyber wars” affect the future of our country?

“My guess is that there will be instances in the decade or two ahead where someone will attack another country in a cyber attack and it will be treated as an act of war.”

What mistakes have you learned from?

“Those are examples of having a very high degree of confidence at understanding something when, in fact, you didn’t.”


How would you grade the mainstream media?

“The press is imperfect, and there’s not much of a correction when mistakes are made.”


How is your autobiography doing?

“Most books that have been written about this period have been written by people who weren’t involved and … [they] don’t have the kind of documentation I do.”


Movies, key people or books of note?

“Certainly my parents. My mom was a school teacher, and my dad loved to read history and served in World War II and was a patriot and a highly ethical person and a man I admire greatly.”


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Mrs. Thomas does not necessarily support or endorse the products, services or positions promoted in any advertisement contained herein, and does not have control over or receive any compensation from any advertiser.