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US Military Officials Reject Criticism of War Plan - 2003-03-30

Senior U.S. defense officials are rejecting criticism, some of it from military commanders, that poor planning and inadequate forces are affecting the war in Iraq.

Defense Secretary Donald Rumsfeld flatly denied charges he interfered with the military planning process for war, overruling commanders' calls for more troops and armor.

"I think that you will find that if you asked anyone that has been involved in the process from the Central Command that every single thing that they have requested has happened," Mr. Rumsfeld said.

Mr. Rumsfeld's comments in a Fox Network television interview drew support from General Richard Myers, Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, who in an NBC News interview rejected claims too few U.S. forces have been sent into Iraq. "I dispute that we have sent an inadequate force to war," he said.

General Myers said the war is going well, though he and Mr. Rumsfeld both acknowledge tough fighting could lie ahead as forces approach Baghdad.