Rumsfeld: Death of Bin Laden a victory in the fight against Islamist terrorism

May 4th, 2011 - 4:22 am ICT by BNO News  

WASHINGTON, D.C. (BNO NEWS) — Former U.S. Defense Secretary Donald Rumsfeld has hailed the U.S. operation that killed al-Qaeda leader Osama bin Laden on Sunday as an ‘important victory in the fight against Islamist terrorism.’

Bin Laden was killed on Sunday during a secret U.S. mission at a compound in the Pakistani city of Abbottabad. Most Americans welcomed the news of his death.

“The man who once called the United States ‘a paper tiger’ and issued a fatwa to ‘kill all Americans’ believed that our nation would not strike back if provoked,” Rumsfeld said in a statement released by his office. “Today that man, responsible for the deaths of 3,000 Americans on September 11th, Osama bin Laden, is dead. It is an achievement of which our country can be proud.”

Rumsfeld served as the U.S. Secretary of Defense from November 1975 until January 1977 and later from January 2001 until December 2006. The attacks on the United States, ordered by Bin Laden, happened during his second term as Defense Secretary.

“This is an important victory in the fight against Islamist terrorism, but the struggle will go on,” Rumsfeld said. “We must not have any illusions that it ends today or that America can afford to let down its guard tomorrow.”

Rumsfeld, who also briefly served as White House Chief of Staff in the 70s, said credit belongs to the ‘courageous’ special forces who executed the mission. “Recognition should also go to the intelligence professionals who have worked tirelessly over the past decade to collect information on al-Qaeda,” he said, adding that intelligence efforts at Guantanamo Bay may have played an ‘essential role.’

“All of this was made possible by the relentless, sustained pressure on al-Qaeda that the Bush administration initiated after 9/11 and that the Obama administration has wisely chosen to continue,” Rumsfeld said.

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