News Release

Robert Gates’s Narcissistic “Duty”

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MELVIN GOODMAN, goody789 at verizon.net
Goodman is director of the National Security Project at the Center for International Policy. He was an analyst at the CIA for 24 years. His most recent book is National Insecurity: The Cost of American Militarism. He just wrote the piece “Robert Gates’s Narcissistic ‘Duty’,” which states: “Unlike the New York Times and the Washington Post, which received room service on the delivery of Duty, the controversial memoir of former Secretary of Defense Robert M. Gates, I will have to wait for Amazon to deliver my copy next week.

“In the meantime, since I have known Bob Gates for nearly 50 years, working with him for more than a decade; working for him for five years; and testifying against him before the Senate Intelligence Committee in 1991, I believe that I have some warnings about the author as well as the leading lights of the mainstream media, such as David Brooks of the Times and Walter Pincus of the Post, who believe that Gates made major contributions to the national security policy of the United States. Nothing could be further from the truth.

“There are several things that need to be understood regarding Gates’s career at the Central Intelligence Agency, the National Security Council, and the Department of Defense. First of all, Gates has been a sycophant in all of his leadership positions, catering to the policy interests of Zbigniew Brzezinski and Brent Scowcroft at the NSC; William Casey at the CIA; and the Joint Chiefs of Staff at the Pentagon.

“Gates catered to the right-wing ideology of Bill Casey in the 1980s, playing a major role in the politicization of intelligence and dangerous crossing the line of policy advocacy in private memoranda to the CIA director. For the most part, Gates has been a windsock when it came to policy decisions and typically supported his masters. …” [Goodman was also recently featured on an Institute for Public Accuracy news release "Debate on Disclosure as Petition Spotlights $600 Million Ties Binding Amazon’s Jeff Bezos, the Washington Post and the CIA."]

ROBERT PARRY, consortnew at aol.com
Parry just wrote the piece “Robert Gates Double-Crosses Obama,” which states: “As Barack Obama is staggered by a back-stabbing memoir from former Defense Secretary Robert Gates, the president can’t say that some people didn’t warn him about the risk of bringing a political opportunist like Gates into his inner circle on national security.

“Those warnings date back to just days after Obama’s election in 2008 when word began to spread that some of his advisers were urging Obama to keep Gates on as Defense Secretary as part of a ‘Team of Rivals’ and a show of bipartisanship. On Nov. 13, 2008, I posted a story at Consortiumnews.com entitled “The Danger of Keeping Robert Gates,” which said:

“‘If Obama does keep Gates on, the new president will be employing someone who embodies many of the worst elements of U.S. national security policy over the past three decades, including responsibility for what Obama himself has fingered as a chief concern, “politicized intelligence.” … it was Gates — as a senior CIA official in the 1980s — who broke the back of the CIA analytical division’s commitment to objective intelligence.’

“I cited a book by former CIA analyst Melvin A. Goodman, Failure of Intelligence: The Decline and Fall of the CIA, which identified Gates as the chief action officer for the Reagan administration’s drive to tailor intelligence reporting to fit White House political desires.

“But Gates’s nefarious roles in national security scandals went much deeper than that, despite his undeniable PR skills in shaping his image as a dedicated public servant who has earned Official Washington’s near-universal regard as a modern-day Wise Man.

“In reality, Gates has been more a careerist who had a chameleon-like skill to adapt to the ideological hues of the powerful people around him. But — at his core — he seemed most comfortable in a Cold War setting of tough-talking belligerence which led him to repeated policy miscalculations, including dismissing Soviet President Mikhail Gorbachev in 1989 as a phony and missing the collapse of the Soviet Union two years later.

“But it’s how Gates began his meteoric rise in the U.S. intelligence community during the Reagan years that has remained most cloaked in mystery. As a young CIA official in 1980, Gates was implicated in secret maneuvers to sabotage President Jimmy Carter’s negotiations to free 52 U.S. hostages then held in Iran, a failure by Carter that doomed his reelection. …”

Parry broke many of the Iran-Contra stories for the Associated Press and Newsweek in the 1980s. He is founder of Consortiumnews.com and author most recently of America’s Stolen Narrative.