Sunday, November 12, 2006

Robert Gates-gates

As more people chime in and remind us of just what Robert Gates has been up to over the last few decades, it is becoming entirely clear that Robert Gates life is one long series of 'gates. From Iran-Contra and Iran-Iraq arms dealing to politicizing Soviet intelligence while funding and training Al Qaeda and giving Pakistan a pass on nuclear weapons development, to overseeing the creation of the network of madrassas that now train Islamic fundamentalists, Robert Gates has indeed been a busy man.

Considering the subsequent behaviour of Republican administrations, Watergate now strikes as a remarkably quaint episode in a much larger and far more ghastly panorama, one that has very much led to the United States' current predicament in the Middle East and Central Asia.


Anonymous Anonymous said...

If you read Novak’s article you'll get the impression that Gates might not be qualified, and Bush may prefer it that way. It's quite obvious to me that Bush only wants someone who will push forward with his personal agenda... and Gates may just be the perfect guy for the job.

11:53 AM  
Blogger theBhc said...

Agreed. Gates seems to be a mix of types. On the one hand, he is clearly a Daddy Bush consigliere, with ties to the "realists" of the Reagan administration and is perhaps the biggest reason why Baker et al. pointed to him. On the other, he appears to also possess that much-admired quality of boss loyalty, what with his penchant for fix intelligence to suit the policy.

I think the biggest facet of Gates' nomination is his clear position on Iran and this is also the position of Baker's Iraq Study Group, which has all but called for negotiation with Iran and is probably behind the recent bold calls by Iraqis to get Syria and Iran in on the Iraq mess to try and settle things down. This must be steaming Cheney.

12:09 PM  
Blogger theBhc said...

Novak writes this:

In particular, he bridled at efforts by two secretaries of state — George Shultz and James Baker — to sanitize intelligence in the interest of protecting Soviet President Mikhail Gorbachev.

Novak is an ass. This runs counter to everything I have read about Gates, who appears to have been a central agent in hyping intelligence about the Soviets. According to Robert Parry, Gates led the effort to implicate the Soviets in the assassination attempt on Pope John Paul II. This, among a vast array of charges by fellow CIA analysts that Gates was pruning intelligence to suit this program. Rather than "sanitizing" intelligence against the Soviets, Shulz and Baker were fed up by the bullshit Gates was producing.

12:27 PM  

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