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(Talking Points Memo)   Career government man who couldn't keep track of nuclear weapons and nearly lost control of VA hospitals thinks the WH mismanaged their strategy in Afghanistan   (talkingpointsmemo.com) divider line 83
    More: Ironic, va hospitals, Defense Secretary Robert Gates, Biden, Afghanistan, Defense Secretary Bob Gates, nuclear weapons, foreign policy, White House  
•       •       •

2638 clicks; posted to Politics » on 07 Jan 2014 at 7:49 PM (1 year ago)   |  Favorite    |   share:  Share on Twitter share via Email Share on Facebook   more»



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2014-01-07 04:12:47 PM  
If you can't even decide whether you won a war or lost it, you're probably not the sharpest knife in the drawer.
 
2014-01-07 04:18:40 PM  
"As I sat there, I thought: The president doesn't trust his commander, can't stand Karzai, doesn't believe in his own strategy and doesn't consider the war to be his," Mr. Gates writes. "For him, it's all about getting out."

Ummm... yeah.  He made no bones about that.
 
2014-01-07 06:46:19 PM  
The attempt to torpedo a potential Biden presidential run is beginning early, it seems.
 
2014-01-07 06:49:45 PM  
So is Gates writing a book, running for office, or just cashing in as a mouthpiece?  Has to be one of the three.

/don't make me RTFA
 
2014-01-07 06:59:44 PM  

Benevolent Misanthrope: "As I sat there, I thought: The president doesn't trust his commander, can't stand Karzai, doesn't believe in his own strategy and doesn't consider the war to be his," Mr. Gates writes. "For him, it's all about getting out."

Ummm... yeah.  He made no bones about that.


The irony is that Obama kept Gates as SecDef so he could dodge confirmation hearings and an endless span of having no SecDef.  This is how Gates pays him back.
 
2014-01-07 07:10:20 PM  

Marcus Aurelius: Benevolent Misanthrope: "As I sat there, I thought: The president doesn't trust his commander, can't stand Karzai, doesn't believe in his own strategy and doesn't consider the war to be his," Mr. Gates writes. "For him, it's all about getting out."

Ummm... yeah.  He made no bones about that.

The irony is that Obama kept Gates as SecDef so he could dodge confirmation hearings and an endless span of having no SecDef.  This is how Gates pays him back.


should have shipped him off to the hague, and let him get arrested for war crimes
AHAHAHA HAHAHA

That would have been so sweet.
 
2014-01-07 07:29:47 PM  

Marcus Aurelius: Benevolent Misanthrope: "As I sat there, I thought: The president doesn't trust his commander, can't stand Karzai, doesn't believe in his own strategy and doesn't consider the war to be his," Mr. Gates writes. "For him, it's all about getting out."

Ummm... yeah.  He made no bones about that.

The irony is that Obama kept Gates as SecDef so he could dodge confirmation hearings and an endless span of having no SecDef.  This is how Gates pays him back.


He's a neocon company man.  If anyone on the WH expected him NOT to stab them in the back at some point, they're dumber than they look.
 
2014-01-07 07:48:54 PM  

Grand_Moff_Joseph: Marcus Aurelius: Benevolent Misanthrope: "As I sat there, I thought: The president doesn't trust his commander, can't stand Karzai, doesn't believe in his own strategy and doesn't consider the war to be his," Mr. Gates writes. "For him, it's all about getting out."

Ummm... yeah.  He made no bones about that.

The irony is that Obama kept Gates as SecDef so he could dodge confirmation hearings and an endless span of having no SecDef.  This is how Gates pays him back.

He's a neocon company man.  If anyone on the WH expected him NOT to stab them in the back at some point, they're dumber than they look.


I always wondered why they kept him on for so long.  Did it really take them that long to cut the deal on Panetta's confirmation?
 
2014-01-07 07:54:16 PM  

Marcus Aurelius: So is Gates writing a book, running for office, or just cashing in as a mouthpiece?  Has to be one of the three.


Book just came out.
 
2014-01-07 07:56:09 PM  
erm.....there's a strategy?

when did this start?
 
2014-01-07 07:56:31 PM  
I love Bob Gates, I really do. He's a good man.

However, I'd like to point out that he was DCI at the Central Intelligence Agency when communism collapsed and he provided absolutely ZERO warning of that event. Oops?

That is the harshest critique I can make of the man, and literally NO ONE saw it coming. I wish him all the best and hope he recovers from his recent injury.

He is entitled to his opinion and he has earned his right to it.
 
2014-01-07 07:58:11 PM  
Gates... another reason to clean house after the prior administration.
Republians are only true to their party.
 
2014-01-07 08:01:10 PM  
The most important part of the article"

Later in the memoir, however, Gates praises Obama's policies on Afghanistan.
"I believe Obama was right in each of these decisions," he wrote.
 
2014-01-07 08:05:47 PM  

GodsTumor: Gates... another reason to clean house after the prior administration.
Republians are only true to their party.


I'd bet a lot of money that you'll never see Hagel doing something like this.
 
2014-01-07 08:06:11 PM  

Marcus Aurelius: The irony is that Obama kept Gates as SecDef so he could dodge confirmation hearings and an endless span of having no SecDef.  This is how Gates pays him back.


Obama awarding the medal of liberty or some shiat as well.

But really who is farking surprised? A ghost written hit piece that is bought in bulk to make the best seller list and then resold for pennies on the dollar is the standard retirement package for most right wing politicians these days.
 
2014-01-07 08:12:33 PM  

Monkeyhouse Zendo: But really who is farking surprised? A ghost written hit piece that is bought in bulk to make the best seller list and then resold for pennies on the dollar is the standard retirement package for most right wing politicians these days.


Not even close. This one will actually sell to real people. Hell, I'm buying a copy. He is not part of the idiotic Neocon Cabal. He just genuinely believes that if you undertake a mission, no matter how idiotic, you carry it to fruition. We just had no plan for success in either theater. We could have withdrawn from Afghanistan if we let the Northern Alliance take hold 12 months after, but they were so busy trying to figure out how to create permanent bases and planning for Iraq it got lost in the fog of war.

That is, indeed, a flaw. However, I'd rather have him on my side than anyone from that entire PNAC clusterf*ck.

He's wrong, but as I quoted above, he did agree with his CINC on how things worked out.
 
2014-01-07 08:14:19 PM  

Monkeyhouse Zendo: Marcus Aurelius: The irony is that Obama kept Gates as SecDef so he could dodge confirmation hearings and an endless span of having no SecDef.  This is how Gates pays him back.

Obama awarding the medal of liberty or some shiat as well.

But really who is farking surprised? A ghost written hit piece that is bought in bulk to make the best seller list and then resold for pennies on the dollar is the standard retirement package for most right wing politicians these days.


Nah, the book sales are gravy. The retirement package is top dollar at a lobbying firm, think tank, or private security company.
 
2014-01-07 08:15:33 PM  
Bob Gates is one of the most decent and honorable men I've ever met.  If he says something negative about Joe Biden, it is not politically motivated.
 
2014-01-07 08:15:48 PM  
We have the largest budget for defense on the globe, and Gates never appreciated how much of a clusterfark we were in. For a man of his office, I'm surprised he was never educated in Sun Tzu's proverbs regarding warfare.

Particularly this jewel that continues to shine brightly today in Afghanistan and Iraq.

"Never get involved in a protracted war."
 
2014-01-07 08:17:09 PM  
It seems like poor form to disclose confidential conversations, particularly about war, with a sitting president. Don't really care which president, it undermines the office in a rather sensitive area. The president should have faith in confidentiality when speaking with his most trusted advisors.

That said, aren't books like these pre-vetted by the government? Is it only classified information they can remove?
 
2014-01-07 08:19:53 PM  

qorkfiend: Nah, the book sales are gravy. The retirement package is top dollar at a lobbying firm, think tank, or private security company.


Yet, what did he choose?

On September 6, 2011, it was announced that Gates had accepted the position of chancellor at the College of William and Mary, succeeding Sandra Day O'Connor. He took the office of the chancellor on February 3, 2012.
On May 2, 2012, Starbucks Corporation announced that Gates had been elected to the Starbucks board of directors. He will serve on the board's nominating and corporate governance committee.[76]

What a money-grubbing-whore!

He could have made 100X that heading a defense contractor. He's had the opportunity before and turned it down. He is not a bad man.
 
2014-01-07 08:21:15 PM  

NewportBarGuy: qorkfiend: Nah, the book sales are gravy. The retirement package is top dollar at a lobbying firm, think tank, or private security company.

Yet, what did he choose?

On September 6, 2011, it was announced that Gates had accepted the position of chancellor at the College of William and Mary, succeeding Sandra Day O'Connor. He took the office of the chancellor on February 3, 2012.
On May 2, 2012, Starbucks Corporation announced that Gates had been elected to the Starbucks board of directors. He will serve on the board's nominating and corporate governance committee.[76]

What a money-grubbing-whore!

He could have made 100X that heading a defense contractor. He's had the opportunity before and turned it down. He is not a bad man.


Oh, I didn't know that. Good for him.
 
2014-01-07 08:22:32 PM  

Wolf_Blitzer: GodsTumor: Gates... another reason to clean house after the prior administration.
Republians are only true to their party.

I'd bet a lot of money that you'll never see Hagel doing something like this.


Yeah, Hagel is a rare breed of (Republican)
 
2014-01-07 08:23:57 PM  
"I think he has been wrong on nearly every major foreign policy and national security issue over the past four decades," Mr. Gates writes.

Well, is he wrong?
 
2014-01-07 08:24:21 PM  
If I recall, Gates was completely on the wrong side of everything that happened in the late eighties, was a manipulative CIA fixer, and was up to his eyeballs in the criminal incompetence that was the entire Iraq enterprise.
 
2014-01-07 08:26:09 PM  

qorkfiend: Oh, I didn't know that. Good for him.


I don't stick up for a lot of people, but I vet the ones I do.

The Right wants to make an issue of this. This book is just a guy venting his frustration from two wars that were really horrible for all of us. I did it with drink and women. He's doing it with a book.

There is NOTHING in that book that indicts the President for anything other than what he campaigned on, and it explains that whole "dithering" thing on Afghanistan.

Bob Gates is a good man.
 
2014-01-07 08:27:23 PM  

Marcus Aurelius: So is Gates writing a book, running for office, or just cashing in as a mouthpiece?  Has to be one of the three.

/don't make me RTFA


Best I can tell, it's D) losing whatever brain cells he had left.
 
2014-01-07 08:36:50 PM  

NewportBarGuy: I did it with drink and women. He's doing it with a book.


Much rather party with you were I presented the choice.
 
2014-01-07 08:38:29 PM  
I agree that the thing to do should have been to seek international consensus through the UN. We farked up there. We need to admit it, and move on.

Yes, Obama's handling of Bush-era farkups isn't going to be a bright moment of his Presidency. Deal with it.

I can.
 
2014-01-07 08:40:44 PM  
VA hospitals fall outside the control of the DOD.
 
2014-01-07 08:42:11 PM  

fusillade762: The attempt to torpedo a potential Biden presidential run is beginning early, it seems.


Ding,ding,ding. They can't be sure it's Hillary. Also I know Obama had his reasons but keeping Gates on and trying to be actually bi-partisan has brought us to this.
 
2014-01-07 08:43:37 PM  
Ironic: Website that is a total shill for Obama has a problem with documented cases of incompetence.
 
2014-01-07 08:45:19 PM  

Gyrfalcon: Marcus Aurelius: So is Gates writing a book, running for office, or just cashing in as a mouthpiece?  Has to be one of the three.

/don't make me RTFA

Best I can tell, it's D) losing whatever brain cells he had left.


Writing a book and bitter, his place in history is a disaster and he's attacking Biden for extra credit to get on some new corporate board of directors.
 
2014-01-07 08:45:20 PM  

olderbudnoweiser: VA hospitals fall outside the control of the DOD.


Thank you!

Soup4Bonnie: NewportBarGuy: I did it with drink and women. He's doing it with a book.

Much rather party with you were I presented the choice.


Hi there. THANK YOU! :)
 
2014-01-07 08:47:19 PM  

NewportBarGuy: I love Bob Gates, I really do. He's a good man.

However, I'd like to point out that he was DCI at the Central Intelligence Agency when communism collapsed and he provided absolutely ZERO warning of that event. Oops?

That is the harshest critique I can make of the man, and literally NO ONE saw it coming. I wish him all the best and hope he recovers from his recent injury.

He is entitled to his opinion and he has earned his right to it.


No one?
It was common knowledge that USSR was a house of cards and collapsing under its own weight.
Thus the big PR push by Gorby at the 11th hour.
The only people NOT seeing it were big military fellators and apparently Bob Gates
 
2014-01-07 08:48:21 PM  

Grand_Moff_Joseph: If you can't even decide whether you won a war or lost it, you're probably not the sharpest knife in the drawer.


To be fair the only winning strategy in Afghanistan was not to play.
 
2014-01-07 08:48:29 PM  

NewportBarGuy: Not even close. This one will actually sell to real people. Hell, I'm buying a copy.


Strange, I never took you for a sucker.

NewportBarGuy: He is not part of the idiotic Neocon Cabal. He just genuinely believes that if you undertake a mission, no matter how idiotic, you carry it to fruition


I once watched a movie where a guy was told he had to saw off his own foot to get out of a cuff or die. As he started sawing away and the audience screamed around me the only thing I could think was that he was an absolute fool. He could more easily have broken his heel bone and pulled his foot through the cuff. But he was handed a saw and so, apparently, there was nothing to be done but start cutting and keep cutting until he was free.

I guess my point is that unthinking commitment may be a great quality for a bullet catcher but it's a shiatty one for a secretary of defense.
 
2014-01-07 08:53:56 PM  
Well he does seem an expert on mismanagement.
 
2014-01-07 08:55:57 PM  

Monkeyhouse Zendo: Strange, I never took you for a sucker.


I'm asking for a pass on this guy.

We had such a horrible asshole as SECDEF then we got this guy.

I know I'm asking for a lot. I don't think I ask for too much.
 
2014-01-07 08:57:51 PM  

jigger: "I think he has been wrong on nearly every major foreign policy and national security issue over the past four decades," Mr. Gates writes.

Well, is he wrong?


Coming from a guy who's been wrong himself and more telling, silent when he should speak up since... well...it is his farkin job.
Gates' failures go back all the way to Viet Nam if I'm not mistooken.
 
2014-01-07 09:02:21 PM  

dstrick44: NewportBarGuy: I love Bob Gates, I really do. He's a good man.

However, I'd like to point out that he was DCI at the Central Intelligence Agency when communism collapsed and he provided absolutely ZERO warning of that event. Oops?

That is the harshest critique I can make of the man, and literally NO ONE saw it coming. I wish him all the best and hope he recovers from his recent injury.

He is entitled to his opinion and he has earned his right to it.

No one?
It was common knowledge that USSR was a house of cards and collapsing under its own weight.
Thus the big PR push by Gorby at the 11th hour.
The only people NOT seeing it were big military fellators and apparently Bob Gates


Well I knew back then big things, really big thing were on the verge of happening. Granted I wasn't sure if Russian troops would move in like Czechoslovakia '58 ( I think that's it) but in all Eastern Europe to hold the line or wait and see. The speed of which all that happened surprised me. Oh and just one thing I wanna bring up when we against Iraq in Kuwait in '91 and Neocons said Russia couldn't do anything for some reason we never said Boo about them invading the 3 Baltic states.
/Oh well
 
2014-01-07 09:02:51 PM  
OK, book is coming out now.
 
2014-01-07 09:04:16 PM  
Regardless of what you might think of Obama, it is difficult to defend the claim that Gates was a good SecDef.
 
2014-01-07 09:06:25 PM  

NewportBarGuy: qorkfiend: Oh, I didn't know that. Good for him.

I don't stick up for a lot of people, but I vet the ones I do.

The Right wants to make an issue of this. This book is just a guy venting his frustration from two wars that were really horrible for all of us. I did it with drink and women. He's doing it with a book.

There is NOTHING in that book that indicts the President for anything other than what he campaigned on, and it explains that whole "dithering" thing on Afghanistan.

Bob Gates is a good man.


They are all, all honorable men.
 
2014-01-07 09:07:52 PM  
Gates highlighted many of the measures taken by the U.S. to advance Israel's security during the Obama Administration, including providing access to state of the art weaponry, assisting with the development of missile-defense systems, and sharing high-level intelligence, before expressing his view that the U.S. has received nothing in return from the Israeli government with regards to the peace process. According to senior U.S. administration sources, other officials present offered no rebuttal to Gates' analysis. This was not the first time Gates publicly expressed frustration with the Netanyahu government, to which he had worked hard to provide wide-scale and deep military cooperation.

There is much for "both sides" to engorge.
 
2014-01-07 09:09:40 PM  

The Jami Turman Fan Club: They are all, all honorable men.


No, most of them are colostomy bags awaiting drainage.
 
2014-01-07 09:14:01 PM  
I was wrong about his Viet Nam record. Apparently he sat out the war on a USAF base in Mo.
The important thing is the experience he brings to the SecDef job.


This is the résumé of our esteemed leader:

Board of Trustees of Fidelity Investments, the largest mutual fund company in the world. Among other defense investments, Fidelity
works in partnership with the Boeing Company, one of the largest war-profiteering corporations in the world, holding some of the
largest defense contracts with the Pentagon.

Board of Directors of Parker Drilling Company, which is drilling for oil all over the world. Particularly, Parker Drilling operates in Kuwait
and has heavy investments drilling for oil in Kazakhstan, one of the former oil-rich Soviet-bloc countries that the Pentagon hopes to
win control over by having a U.S. base in Afghanistan.

Board of Directors of NACCO Industries, which has approximately $30 million in defense contracts.

Board of Directors of Draper Labs, which was once known as the Massachusetts Institute of Technology Instrumentation Laboratory.
After scoring huge defense contracts to develop navigation systems for ballistic missiles during the criminal war in Vietnam, massive
anti-war protests at MIT against the research program shamed the group into splitting off and becoming Draper Labs, which still holds
multi-billion-dollar defense contracts with the Pentagon.

Board of Directors of Science Applications International Corporation, a defense contractor that made akilling off of the war in Iraq,
elevating it to the ninth largest defense contractor in the world. SAIC is now a Fortune 500 company holding multi-billion-dollar
defense contracts with the Pentagon.
 
2014-01-07 09:19:23 PM  

dstrick44: This is the résumé of our esteemed leader:


Compared to... yours?
 
2014-01-07 09:22:40 PM  

dstrick44: I was wrong about his Viet Nam record. Apparently he sat out the war on a USAF base in Mo.
The important thing is the experience he brings to the SecDef job.


This is the résumé of our esteemed leader:

Board of Trustees of Fidelity Investments, the largest mutual fund company in the world. Among other defense investments, Fidelity
works in partnership with the Boeing Company, one of the largest war-profiteering corporations in the world, holding some of the
largest defense contracts with the Pentagon.

Board of Directors of Parker Drilling Company, which is drilling for oil all over the world. Particularly, Parker Drilling operates in Kuwait
and has heavy investments drilling for oil in Kazakhstan, one of the former oil-rich Soviet-bloc countries that the Pentagon hopes to
win control over by having a U.S. base in Afghanistan.

Board of Directors of NACCO Industries, which has approximately $30 million in defense contracts.

Board of Directors of Draper Labs, which was once known as the Massachusetts Institute of Technology Instrumentation Laboratory.
After scoring huge defense contracts to develop navigation systems for ballistic missiles during the criminal war in Vietnam, massive
anti-war protests at MIT against the research program shamed the group into splitting off and becoming Draper Labs, which still holds
multi-billion-dollar defense contracts with the Pentagon.

Board of Directors of Science Applications International Corporation, a defense contractor that made akilling off of the war in Iraq,
elevating it to the ninth largest defense contractor in the world. SAIC is now a Fortune 500 company holding multi-billion-dollar
defense contracts with the Pentagon.


pdxretro.com
 
2014-01-07 09:29:54 PM  
In the same memoir the guy complains that Obama doesn't trust the Pentagon, and yet almost boasts that he told the brass to withhold information from National Security Advisers...WTF?
 
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