Monday, 19 April 2010

Israel Matzav: But of course: Gates says the Times 'mischaracterized' his memo

But of course: Gates says the Times 'mischaracterized' his memo

On Sunday, I blogged a New York Times report that had US Secretary of Defense Robert Gates sending a three-page memo to President Obama in January in which Gates "wrote of a variety of concerns, including the absence of an effective strategy should Iran choose the course that many government and outside analysts consider likely: Iran could assemble all the major parts it needs for a nuclear weapon — fuel, designs and detonators — but stop just short of assembling a fully operational weapon." Unsurprisingly, Gates is now claiming that the Times 'mischaracterized' his memo.

Responding to a report in the New York Times, Defense Secretary Robert Gates on Sunday said the sources who had described his January classified memo on U.S. Iran strategy had "mischaracterized its purpose and content."

"The New York Times sources who revealed my January memo to the National Security Advisor mischaracterized its purpose and content," Gates said in a statement Sunday.

"With the Administration's pivot to a pressure track on Iran earlier this year, the memo identified next steps in our defense planning process where further interagency discussion and policy decisions would be needed in the months and weeks ahead," Gates said.

"The memo was not intended as a 'wake up call' or received as such by the President's national security team," he continued. "Rather, it presented a number of questions and proposals intended to contribute to an orderly and timely decision making process."

And I suppose one of those questions must be the development of an effective strategy that will be used in the event that Iran continues to say 'no.'

In other words, the Times got it right this time.

Israel Matzav: But of course: Gates says the Times 'mischaracterized' his memo

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