Just a guess.
[Robert Gates] sent a copy of the book to Obama with what he describes as “a very warm inscription.”
Did he also send a copy to Vice President Biden, described in the book as having been wrong on just about just every national security issue for decades?
“No, I didn’t.”
Via @NorahODonnell. I should also note my quiet, admittedly slightly conspiratorial theory that Gates wrote his book to make sure that Hillary Clinton is the Democratic nominee in 2016. Note, of course, that this does not mean that he wants her to win, per se; just that it’s better her than Joe Biden.
I’m going to show my readers this paragraph, than walk them through it. Background: it’s part of Robert Gates’ memoir on his time as SecDef. Specifically, Gates (with the help of the military brass) was trying to keep Afghanistan from sliding off of the beam under the new administration, and running headlong into the Obama administration’s apparent inherent inability to understand that wars are messy and not subject to control.
Oh, and the fact that the Democrats advising the President on military affairs were also, by and large, clueless idiots. But you knew that already.
Anyway, after apparently trying one too many times to make the President understand that warfighters need support staff, Barack Obama threw a tantrum:
[JCS Chairman Admiral Michael] Mullen and I repeatedly discussed with the infuriated president what he regarded as military pressure on him. “Is it a lack of respect for me?” Obama asked us. “Are [Petraeus, McChrystal and Mullen] trying to box me in? I’ve tried to create an environment where all points of view can be expressed and have a robust debate. I’m prepared to devote any amount of time to it—however many hours or days. What is wrong? Is it the process? Are they suspicious of my politics? Do they resent that I never served in the military? Do they think because I’m young that I don’t see what they’re doing?”
Oh, dear. This is rather exquisite narcissism, isn’t it? – And no, not self-reflection, either. The President was ‘infuriated,’ remember? That suggests that the President took the entire thing personally, in precisely the way that one should not. It’s not the military’s fault that Barack Obama was not mentally prepared to be Commander in Chief. Neither is it their fault that Obama apparently does not take constructive criticism well. Or at all. And it certainly isn’t their fault that the man thinks that the military updating their needs is somehow an indication that they dislike President Obama.
But I digress.
Continue reading Robert Gates inadvertently gives us a good look at @barackobama’s war insecurities.
Basically, I am going to labor under the delusion that the NYT’s (false) report that the Benghazi attack was not due to al Qaeda-related terrorism is actually a clever bit of misdirection done by the shadow Hillary Clinton campaign to exonerate her record AND that the Washington Post’s rebuttal was the answering gambit by the shadow Joe Biden campaign to target Clinton AND that Robert Gates’ new memoir slamming both was actually put up by a shadowy Third Way cabal in the Democratic party to start a war between the two factions and allow for a dark horse candidate to sweep in. Continue reading I have decided to subscribe to a false media narrative*.
Walking through this one:
- Last week former Secretary of Defense Donald Rumsfeld reacted strongly to the White House’s allegation that military commanders in Afghanistan were denied troop requests under the previous administration. Actually, that’s too weak a statement: Rumsfeld denied that anything of the sort had happened under his watch.
- Which, in point of fact, it did not: the administration was referring to events in 2008 – under Rumsfeld’s successor, Robert Gates (who is also the current SecDef, by the way) – and said events can be more accurately described as a ‘delay,’ not a ‘refusal.’ The requests were made by General David McKiernan.
- Yes, the David McKiernan that Gates fired.
- When pressed on this, current White House Press Secretary Robert Gibbs must have felt backed into a corner. After all, he was trying to justify the White House sneering at a policy implemented by a Secretary of Defense that the new administration had retained, and at the expense of a military general that the new administration had sacked. Gibbs being Gibbs, he took the opportunity to try to change the subject by sniping at Rumsfeld some more.
- Because, of course, this administration is terrified of ever, ever admitting being wrong about anything. Sort of like what the Left pretended that the previous administration was like, only for real.
All of this is context for the response from Rumsfeld’s office:
The administration now claims President Obama was actually referring to denials of troops by his own Secretary of Defense in 2008. This is obviously not what the President meant. If it is what the President meant, he owes an apology to General McKiernan for dismissing him, for it was General McKiernan who sought additional forces in 2008.
This looseness with the facts seems to be a pattern in the current administration’s efforts to blame their challenges on their predecessors. Nearly one year into this administration, that approach is wearing thin.
My only quibble with that is the use of the phrase ‘wearing thin.’ It wore bare months ago.
Full statement after the fold. Continue reading Rumsfeld sees and raises on Afghanistan.
Charge your glasses!
“Confusion to our enemies!”
Israel expected to hold back on Iran as diplomacy runs its course
Robert Gates would be “surprised” if Israel attacked Iran this year to prevent it developing a nuclear weapon.
Petraeus Says Israel Might Choose to Attack Iran
April 1 (Bloomberg) — Israel might choose to attack Iran to prevent it from developing a nuclear bomb, the top U.S. commander in the Middle East said today.
“Why the hell should they be any better off than we are?”
Crossposted to RedState.