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Robert Gates blasts Obama in new memoir

by Greg Belfrage

Former Defense Secretary Robert Gates will soon be publishing his memoir. Excerpts were released this week by the Washington Post.

Gates is strongly critical of President Obama in the book. He blames the president for pulling the rug out from under him on defense spending. Gates also says Obama didn't tell him about the repeal of "Don't ask, don't tell" until the day before he announced it.

President Obama also failed to take ownership of the war in Afghanistan. Gates writes, "(Obama) "doesn't believe in his own strategy, and doesn't consider the war to be his. For him, it's all about getting out."

Gates says President Obama and then Secretary of State Clinton both admitted to him that they had opposed the Iraqi surge based purely on politics.

Surprised by any of these revelations? I'm certainly not.

Read more: Former U.S. Defense Secretary Gates criticizes Obama in memoir

Gates says he never doubted that President Obama supported our men and women serving in the military. However, he writes that Obama clearly distrusted his own military leaders and advisors.

“(George W.) Bush seemed to enjoy the company of the senior military; I think Obama considered time spent with generals and admirals an obligation,” Gates writes.

Gates seems to save his harshest criticism for Vice-President Joe Biden. "I think he has been wrong on nearly every major foreign policy and national security issue over the past four decades."

None of these revelations surprise me. Gates is only validating things that many political observers already believed to be true of Obama and his administration.

Frankly, I am a bit troubled by these kinds of political tell-all books. There's something unsettling about writing these kinds of scathing comments after you've left service.

It doesn't appear Gates was very vocal about sharing his objections and concerns with President Obama. The Post said Gates acknowledges in his book that he did not confront Obama over the White House's tight control over all aspects of national security policy.

If that's the case, it seems cowardly for Gates to raise his concerns now.

Gates' timing is also troublesome, since he waited until after the president's re-election to share his observations.

"Duty: Memoirs of a Secretary at War" will hit book stores next week. 

Greg Belfrage is heard mornings 6am-9am on KELO Newstalk 1320 AM / 107.9 FM. Greg can be contacted at greg.belfrage@mwcradio.com. You can also follow him on Twitter.