Former Secretary of Defense Robert Gates has a new book “Duty: Memoirs of a Secretary at War”, scheduled for release Jan. 14. Bob Woodward picks the book apart in the Washington Post.
Woodward says, "It is rare for a former Cabinet member, let alone a defense secretary occupying a central position in the chain of command, to publish such an antagonistic portrait of a sitting president. "
Gates praises Obama...
Gates’s severe criticism is even more surprising — some might say contradictory — because toward the end of “Duty,” he says of Obama’s chief Afghanistan policies, “I believe Obama was right in each of these decisions.”
Apparently Gates has no kind words for VP Joe Biden though.
“I think he has been wrong on nearly every major foreign policy and national security issue over the past four decades,” Mr. Gates writes.
“I never doubted Obama’s support for the troops, only his support for their mission,” [snip]
“All too early in the [Obama] administration,” he writes, “suspicion and distrust of senior military officers by senior White House officials — including the president and vice president — became a big problem for me as I tried to manage the relationship between the commander in chief and his military leaders.”
Gates offers a catalogue of various meetings, based in part on notes that he and his aides made at the time, including an exchange between Obama and then-Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton that he calls “remarkable.”
He writes: “Hillary told the president that her opposition to the  surge in Iraq had been political because she was facing him in the Iowa primary. . . . The president conceded vaguely that opposition to the Iraq surge had been political. To hear the two of them making these admissions, and in front of me, was as surprising as it was dismaying.”
How can you support the troops if you do not support their mission, especially when you are their Commander in Chief. Is not their mission your mission? I don't believe Obama supports or respects the troops at all.
Gates writes about Obama with an ambivalence that he does not resolve, praising him as “a man of personal integrity” even as he faults his leadership. Though the book simmers with disappointment in Obama, it reflects outright contempt for Vice President Joe Biden and many of Obama’s top aides.
Biden is accused of “poisoning the well” against the military leadership. Thomas Donilon, initially Obama’s deputy national security adviser, and then-Lt. Gen. Douglas E. Lute, the White House coordinator for the wars, are described as regularly engaged in “aggressive, suspicious, and sometimes condescending and insulting questioning of our military leaders.”
Drudge highlights the book:
Read Woodward's full article here.