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Bush's Secretary of Defense: "I would confess I'm no expert on Iraq"

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Oh my God. Bush's new Secretary of Defense, Robert Gates, just said this today testifying before the House Armed Services Committee (I just saw the clip on ABC). He's no expert on Iraq? Funny, that's not what the White House claimed just two months ago - and I quote from the White House Web site:

Dr. Gates Understands The Threats We Currently Face And The Nature Of Our Enemies In Iraq And Around The World. He has served as an intelligence advisor to six presidents representing both parties during his 27-year career at the CIA and National Security Council.....

Dr. Gates Understands The Challenges Facing Our Nation In Iraq. While in the private sector, he has continued to serve his country as a member of the Iraq Study Group – a distinguished independent panel of Republicans and Democrats led by former Secretary of State James Baker and former Congressman Lee Hamilton. As a member of the Iraq Study Group, Dr. Gates has traveled to Iraq, where he's met with Iraq's leaders and our military commanders on the ground.

* Dr. Gates Spent Nine Years At The National Security Council, Including Serving As The Deputy National Security Advisor For President George H. W. Bush During Operation Desert Storm.
The man was a member of the Iraq Study Group, yet he's still not an expert on Iraq even today? He's a 27 year veteran of the CIA and the NSC. He was the number 2 guy at the NSC during the first Iraq war. He's received countless briefings about the situation in Iraq, since he is after all the Secretary of Defense, the guy running the war. Yet he's still not an expert on the country or the war.

Then what the hell is Robert Gates doing running the Department of Defense when we're at war in Iraq?

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