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75 Top Donald Rumsfeld Quotes

Famous As: Former US Secretary Secretary of Defense
Born On: July 9, 1932
Died On: June 29, 2021
Born In: Chicago, Illinois, United States
Founder / Co Founder: Japanese-American Inter-Parliamentary Council
Died At Age: 88
Donald Henry Rumsfeld is a retired American political personality. He served as 13th United State Secretary of Defense from 1975 to 1977 under President Gerald Ford, and again as 21st Secretary of Defense from 2001 to 2006 under President George W. Bush. This way, he became the youngest and the second-oldest Secretary of Defense. In addition to this, Rumsfeld served several important positions throughout his political life. He was a member of the U.S. Congress for three terms from Illinois. He also served as Director of the Office of Economic Opportunity, Counsellor to the President (1969–1973), the United States Permanent Representative to NATO (1973–1974), and White House Chief of Staff (1974–1975). We have collected some of Rumsfeld's famous quotes from his speeches, interviews, observations, writings etc. Let's have a look at Donald Rumsfeld's quotes on politics, America, planning, country, achievements, Congress, jobs, integrity, etc.
Listed In:
Death,
View,
Encourage

Death, View, Encourage

Donald Henry Rumsfeld
Going,
Like,
Everybody

Going, Like, Everybody

Donald Henry Rumsfeld
Cost,
Always,
Effective

Cost, Always, Effective

Donald Henry Rumsfeld
Think,
Old,
I Think

Think, Old, I Think

Donald Henry Rumsfeld
Never,
More,
Than

Never, More, Than

Donald Henry Rumsfeld
People,
Activities,
Prune

People, Activities, Prune

Donald Henry Rumsfeld
Distance,
Top,
Reduce

Distance, Top, Reduce

Donald Henry Rumsfeld
Staff,
Cutting,
Eliminate

Staff, Cutting, Eliminate

Donald Henry Rumsfeld
Exercise,
Country,
Over

Exercise, Country, Over

Donald Henry Rumsfeld
Press,
Record,
Off

Press, Record, Off

Donald Henry Rumsfeld
Remember,
Where,
Came

Remember, Where, Came

Donald Henry Rumsfeld
Politics,
Serious,
Numerous

Politics, Serious, Numerous

Donald Henry Rumsfeld
Politics,
Rather,
Than

Politics, Rather, Than

Donald Henry Rumsfeld
Doubt,
Brainy,
Still

Doubt, Brainy, Still

Donald Henry Rumsfeld
Last,
State Governments

Last, State Governments

Donald Henry Rumsfeld
Say,
Like,
Front Page

Say, Like, Front Page

Donald Henry Rumsfeld
Personal,
Separate,
Rubs

Personal, Separate, Rubs

Donald Henry Rumsfeld
Away,
Range,
Issues

Away, Range, Issues

Donald Henry Rumsfeld
Remember,
Want,
Asked

Remember, Want, Asked

Donald Henry Rumsfeld
Still,
Staff,
Accompanies

Still, Staff, Accompanies

Donald Henry Rumsfeld
Bad,
News,
Delivering

Bad, News, Delivering

Donald Henry Rumsfeld
Learn,
Will,
Appropriate

Learn, Will, Appropriate

Donald Henry Rumsfeld
Execution,
Fact,
His

Execution, Fact, His

Donald Henry Rumsfeld
Leadership,
Necessary,
Edges

Leadership, Necessary, Edges

Donald Henry Rumsfeld
Original,
Some,
Predecessors

Original, Some, Predecessors

Donald Henry Rumsfeld
Shape,
Critical,
Thus

Shape, Critical, Thus

Donald Henry Rumsfeld
Performance,
Will,
Wonders

Performance, Will, Wonders

Donald Henry Rumsfeld
War,
Fact,
Were

War, Fact, Were

Donald Henry Rumsfeld
Success,
Depends,
Part

Success, Depends, Part

Donald Henry Rumsfeld
Way,
Well

Way, Well

Donald Henry Rumsfeld
I don't do quagmires.

I don't do quagmires.

Donald Henry Rumsfeld
Don't automatically obey Presidential directives if you disagree or if you suspect he hasn't considered key aspects of the issue.

Don't automatically obey Presidential directives if you disagree or if you suspect he hasn't considered key aspects of the issue.

Donald Henry Rumsfeld
Our task, your task... is to try to connect the dots before something happens. People say, 'Well, where's the smoking gun?' Well, we don't want to see a smoking gun from a weapon of mass destruction.

Our task, your task... is to try to connect the dots before something happens. People say, 'Well, where's the smoking gun?' Well, we don't want to see a smoking gun from a weapon of mass destruction.

Donald Henry Rumsfeld
I can't tell you if the use of force in Iraq today will last five days, five weeks or five months, but it won't last any longer than that.

I can't tell you if the use of force in Iraq today will last five days, five weeks or five months, but it won't last any longer than that.

Donald Henry Rumsfeld
Congress, the press, and the bureaucracy too often focus on how much money or effort is spent, rather than whether the money or effort actually achieves the announced goal.

Congress, the press, and the bureaucracy too often focus on how much money or effort is spent, rather than whether the money or effort actually achieves the announced goal.

Donald Henry Rumsfeld
Public servants are paid to serve the American people. Do it well.

Public servants are paid to serve the American people. Do it well.

Donald Henry Rumsfeld
Many people around the President have sizeable egos before entering government, some with good reason. Their new positions will do little to moderate their egos.

Many people around the President have sizeable egos before entering government, some with good reason. Their new positions will do little to moderate their egos.

Donald Henry Rumsfeld
If the staff lacks policy guidance against which to test decisions, their decisions will be random.

If the staff lacks policy guidance against which to test decisions, their decisions will be random.

Donald Henry Rumsfeld
Make decisions about the President's personal security. He can overrule you, but don't ask him to be the one to counsel caution.

Make decisions about the President's personal security. He can overrule you, but don't ask him to be the one to counsel caution.

Donald Henry Rumsfeld
Leave the President's family business to him. You will have plenty to do without trying to manage the First Family. They are likely to do fine without your help.

Leave the President's family business to him. You will have plenty to do without trying to manage the First Family. They are likely to do fine without your help.

Donald Henry Rumsfeld
Amidst all the clutter, beyond all the obstacles, aside from all the static, are the goals set. Put your head down, do the best job possible, let the flak pass, and work towards those goals.

Amidst all the clutter, beyond all the obstacles, aside from all the static, are the goals set. Put your head down, do the best job possible, let the flak pass, and work towards those goals.

Donald Henry Rumsfeld
Preserve the President's options. He may need them.

Preserve the President's options. He may need them.

Donald Henry Rumsfeld
First rule of politics: you can't win unless you're on the ballot. Second rule: If you run, you may lose. And, if you tie, you do not win.

First rule of politics: you can't win unless you're on the ballot. Second rule: If you run, you may lose. And, if you tie, you do not win.

Donald Henry Rumsfeld
If you are not criticized, you may not be doing much.

If you are not criticized, you may not be doing much.

Donald Henry Rumsfeld
Reduce the number of lawyers. They are like beavers - they get in the middle of the stream and dam it up.

Reduce the number of lawyers. They are like beavers - they get in the middle of the stream and dam it up.

Donald Henry Rumsfeld
Secretary Powell and I agree on every single issue that has ever been before this administration except for those instances where Colin's still learning.

Secretary Powell and I agree on every single issue that has ever been before this administration except for those instances where Colin's still learning.

Donald Henry Rumsfeld
Test ideas in the marketplace. You learn from hearing a range of perspectives. Consultation helps engender the support decisions need to be successfully implemented.

Test ideas in the marketplace. You learn from hearing a range of perspectives. Consultation helps engender the support decisions need to be successfully implemented.

Donald Henry Rumsfeld
It is easier to get into something than to get out of it.

It is easier to get into something than to get out of it.

Donald Henry Rumsfeld
Don't speak ill of your predecessors or successors. You didn't walk in their shoes.

Don't speak ill of your predecessors or successors. You didn't walk in their shoes.

Donald Henry Rumsfeld
Arguments of convenience lack integrity and inevitably trip you up.

Arguments of convenience lack integrity and inevitably trip you up.

Donald Henry Rumsfeld
Don't think of yourself as indispensable or infallible. As Charles De Gaulle said, the cemeteries of the world are full of indispensable men.

Don't think of yourself as indispensable or infallible. As Charles De Gaulle said, the cemeteries of the world are full of indispensable men.

Donald Henry Rumsfeld
Don't divide the world into 'them' and 'us.' Avoid infatuation with or resentment of the press, the Congress, rivals, or opponents. Accept them as facts. They have their jobs and you have yours.

Don't divide the world into 'them' and 'us.' Avoid infatuation with or resentment of the press, the Congress, rivals, or opponents. Accept them as facts. They have their jobs and you have yours.

Donald Henry Rumsfeld
Don't be a bottleneck. If a matter is not a decision for the President or you, delegate it. Force responsibility down and out. Find problem areas, add structure and delegate. The pressure is to do the reverse. Resist it.

Don't be a bottleneck. If a matter is not a decision for the President or you, delegate it. Force responsibility down and out. Find problem areas, add structure and delegate. The pressure is to do the reverse. Resist it.

Donald Henry Rumsfeld
Simply because you do not have evidence that something exists does not mean that you have evidence that it doesn't exist.

Simply because you do not have evidence that something exists does not mean that you have evidence that it doesn't exist.

Donald Henry Rumsfeld
Enjoy your time in public service. It may well be one of the most interesting and challenging times of your life.

Enjoy your time in public service. It may well be one of the most interesting and challenging times of your life.

Donald Henry Rumsfeld
It isn't making mistakes that's critical; it's correcting them and getting on with the principal task.

It isn't making mistakes that's critical; it's correcting them and getting on with the principal task.

Donald Henry Rumsfeld
Know that the amount of criticism you receive may correlate somewhat to the amount of publicity you receive.

Know that the amount of criticism you receive may correlate somewhat to the amount of publicity you receive.

Donald Henry Rumsfeld
Look for what's missing. Many advisors can tell a President how to improve what's proposed or what's gone amiss. Few are able to see what isn't there.

Look for what's missing. Many advisors can tell a President how to improve what's proposed or what's gone amiss. Few are able to see what isn't there.

Donald Henry Rumsfeld
Be precise. A lack of precision is dangerous when the margin of error is small.

Be precise. A lack of precision is dangerous when the margin of error is small.

Donald Henry Rumsfeld
Don't blame the boss. He has enough problems.

Don't blame the boss. He has enough problems.

Donald Henry Rumsfeld
Think ahead. Don't let day-to-day operations drive out planning.

Think ahead. Don't let day-to-day operations drive out planning.

Donald Henry Rumsfeld

There are known knowns. These are things we know that we know. There are known unknowns. That is to say, there are things that we know we don't know. But there are also unknown unknowns. There are things we don't know we don't know.

Donald Henry Rumsfeld

Your performance depends on your people. Select the best, train them and back them. When errors occur, give sharper guidance. If errors persist or if the fit feels wrong, help them move on. The country cannot afford amateur hour in the White House.

Donald Henry Rumsfeld

Plan backwards as well as forward. Set objectives and trace back to see how to achieve them. You may find that no path can get you there. Plan forward to see where your steps will take you, which may not be clear or intuitive.

Donald Henry Rumsfeld

You will launch many projects, but have time to finish only a few. So think, plan, develop, launch and tap good people to be responsible. Give them authority and hold them accountable. Trying to do too much yourself creates a bottleneck.

Donald Henry Rumsfeld

Oh my goodness gracious, what you can buy off the Internet in terms of overhead photography. A trained ape can know an awful lot of what is going on in this world, just by punching on his mouse, for a relatively modest cost.

Donald Henry Rumsfeld

If a prospective Presidential approach can't be explained clearly enough to be understood well, it probably hasn't been thought through well enough. If not well understood by the American people, it probably won't 'sail' anyway. Send it back for further thought.

Donald Henry Rumsfeld