Sending 18, 19, 20 year old kids to fight and die in a war that you aren't really interested in fighting nor that you care about is pretty bad. The book is described as unusual for a former cabinet member to write a book with such a bitter tone about a president and how it is so particularly unusual for Gates given that people view him as someone who it is very difficult to get angry. From the Washington Post:
In a new memoir, former defense secretary Robert Gates unleashes harsh judgments about President Obama’s leadership and his commitment to the Afghanistan war, writing that by early 2010 he had concluded the president “doesn’t believe in his own strategy, and doesn’t consider the war to be his. For him, it’s all about getting out.” . . .
As a candidate, Obama had made plain his opposition to the 2003 Iraq invasion while embracing the Afghanistan war as a necessary response to the 2001 terrorist attacks on the United States, requiring even more military resources to succeed. In Gates’s highly emotional account, Obama remains uncomfortable with the inherited wars and distrustful of the military that is providing him options. Their different worldviews produced a rift that, at least for Gates, became personally wounding and impossible to repair. . . .
In “Duty,” Gates describes his outwardly calm demeanor as a facade. Underneath, he writes, he was frequently “seething” and “running out of patience on multiple fronts.”
Labels: Obama Foreign Policy, obamaincompetence