“The Big Story Starting Off The Week…”

says Josh Marshall (or was it Maureen Dowd’s friend?): Robert Draper’s GQ piece.

Draper contributes all kinds of memorable and largely anonymous quotes to, among other things, the “growing consensus that [Donald] Rumsfeld’s obduracy—on increasing troop levels, on recognizing the insurgency—was a primary cause of mishap in Iraq.” A “story line” that, Draper writes, “Rumsfeld and his defenders have already begun to counter… most notably with an op-ed by Rumsfeld himself in The New York Times published last November—in which he argued, remarkably, that he had been ‘incorrectly portrayed as an opponent of the surge in Iraq.’”

Also, Rumsfeld reportedly delivered to President Bush intelligence briefings with special cover sheets (think inspirational war-time photos coupled with Bible quotes, such as the cover with the photo of the former Iraqi Information Minister “Baghdad Bob”* Saddam Hussein and the line from 1 Peter 2:15 about how “by doing good you should silence the ignorant talk of foolish men.”) GQ’s cover sheet slideshow, here.

More from the article: What was it that Bush “saw in” Rumsfeld? For one, Draper writes, the president “enjoyed Rumsfeld’s cussedness, his alpha-dog behavior toward the media.”

*(I was seeing things).

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Liz Cox Barrett is a writer at CJR.