Foggy Bottom (of the priority list)

By: Monday August 16, 2010 10:05 pm

At the risk of tackling a topic I’ve talked about before (a couple times), something stuck out to me in the Gates-a-palooza of the last few days. From Fareed Zakaria’s Op-Ed in WaPo: Gates likes to point out that there are more musicians in U.S. military marching bands than members of the Foreign Service. In [...]

Gates Claims Eisenhower’s Mantle, Challenging Pentagon Overspending

By: Saturday May 8, 2010 3:30 pm

It’s really hard to figure out just what section of Robert Gates’ speech this afternoon to the Eisenhower library about “political will and the Defense budget” to quote. Gates is taking on a lot of opponents. Legislators who never met a defense platform they wouldn’t throw money at. Pentagon bureaucrats and staff officers who never [...]

How To Read Gates’ Iran Memo

By: Monday April 19, 2010 8:28 am

Not as a bellicose document; something the Obama administration acted upon; and, yes, a method to concentrate international attention on current weaknesses in the Nuclear Nonproliferation Treaty. All will be explained if you follow this link to the Washington Independent. The New York Times cleans up after itself here. Putting “The Battle of Hampton Roads” [...]

Gates’ Iran Memo And The NPT Review Conference

By: Sunday April 18, 2010 9:42 am

I’m not a big fan of speculation about Who Leaked What And Why, because we’re so rarely in a position to actually know. A more fruitful enterprise is to speculate on likely effects. So it is with Secretary Gates’s January memo about lacuna in U.S. strategy toward Iranian advances in uranium enrichment. Look at what [...]

DADT: OK We Poppin’ Champagne Like We At The Human Rights Campaign

By: Thursday March 25, 2010 11:50 am

Now that Defense Secretary Gates has unveiled his changes to the implementation of DADT, here’s my new(er) piece for the Washington Independent this morning: Gates said the changes, endorsed by Joint Chiefs of Staff and vetted by the Pentagon’s top lawyer, would add “a greater measure of common sense and common decency” for service members [...]

Bob Gates Tells People To Act Like Adults About Israel

By: Thursday March 25, 2010 10:20 am

The U.S.-Israel military-to-military bonds are strong as ever, Robert Gates said at a press conference this morning. He wants people to stop acting like what the right is calling “linkage” is controversial. “The U.S. has considered peace in the Middle East to be a national security interest for decades,” Gates said at a press conference [...]

Is Bob Gates The Greatest Defense Secretary Of All Time?

By: Thursday March 11, 2010 10:00 pm

Settle down, Yeezy. The miracle of GoogleBuzz allows me to see Josh Foust‘s GoogleReader, where he likes to talk about articles that annoy him, and one of the things that annoyed him today is my offhand remark in an earlier post that Robert Gates is shaping up to be the defense secretary ever. So I’m [...]

On Strategy: Pay Attention, Here’s The Thick Of The Plot

By: Thursday March 11, 2010 2:02 pm

Michael Cohen needs to pay closer attention: Jim Jones and Bob Gates are obviously smart men, but one doesn’t get the sense (particularly from the former) that they are focused on recalibrating US strategy. Indeed, one could fairly ask where are all the Obama campaign aides that were pushing the idea of a new mindset [...]