It is impossible for me to write about Mr. Rumsfeld, the former U.S. secretary of defense who died on Tuesday, without writing about his memos. He played a role in making memo-writing the new frontier in governmental accountability. He also pioneered the memo as an obfuscatory instrument. Write one memo saying one thing, write another memo saying the exact opposite.
As I interviewed Mr. Rumsfeld for my documentary about him, “The Unknown Known,” it became (at least for me) a story about a man lost in his endless archive, adrift in a sea of his own verbiage.
Donald Rumsfeld’s Fog of Memos