Defense Secretary's Comments the Ultimate Rejection of July 2011 Drawdown
Though the comments were made several months ago and only became public today, Defense Secretary Robert Gates had a moment of shocking honesty during a May dinner for Afghan President Hamid Karzai.
“We’re not leaving Afghanistan prematurely,” Gates insisted during comments at the dinner, “in fact, we’re not ever leaving at all.” The comments serve as a shocking contrast to his repeated comments over the summer, in which he insisted there was “no question” in his mind that the drawdown from Afghan would start in July 2011.
Gates continued with this public position even after President Obama disavowed the date, and at this point Gen. David Petraeus insists the war could easily last another decade, while NATO countries are disavowing a possible 2014 date to end the war.
Gates’ comments came in the context of his complaints about having “abandoned” Afghanistan after the Soviet occupation ended. With the US now firmly on the side of the former Soviet allies, it seems Gates’ answer is to continue the occupation forever.
Last 5 posts by Jason Ditz
- Karzai Pulls Out of Afghan Peace Talks - June 19th, 2013
- In Drills, US and Jordan Prepare to Attack Syria - June 18th, 2013
- UN Chief Urges Easing of 1990 Iraq Sanctions - June 18th, 2013
- Four US Soldiers Killed in Attack on Afghan Base - June 18th, 2013
- DHS Wants Same Surveillance Powers as NSA - June 18th, 2013