Daily Revolt

January 17, 2008

Anger over Gates' NATO Criticism

Gates has obviously learned from his boss on how to antagonize your allies. What this dummy doesn't mention is that it was Bush's decision to invade Iraq, and then occupy that nation, that led to resurgence of the Taliban in Afghanistan. This is really a cop out by the White House, they want to distance themselves from inevitable defeat in Afghanistan:
U.S. Defense Secretary Robert Gates' criticism of NATO allies' performance in Afghanistan led to major diplomatic back-peddling in Washington.

A Los Angeles Times interview quoted Gates Wednesday as saying he was "worried we have some military forces that don't know how to do counterinsurgency operations."

That rankled the governments of Australia, Britain, Canada and the Netherlands.

Soon after the article was published, Gates phoned Canadian Defense Minister Peter MacKay to express "regret and embarrassment," Canada's Globe & Mail newspaper reported.

Canadian soldiers are getting killed at about three times the U.S. rate in combat in Afghanistan, the newspaper said.

Dutch Defense Minister Eimert van Middlekoop summoned the U.S. ambassador to explain Gates' remarks, while NATO Secretary-General Jaap de Hoop Scheffer dismissed the criticism in Brussels.

The Washington Post said unnamed NATO sources were particularly angered by Gates' claim U.S. forces "are doing a terrific job ... They've got the (counterinsurgency) thing down pat."

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