By Sarah B. Boxer
In an exclusive interview with Yahoo global news anchor Katie Couric, former Defense Secretary Bob Gates sounded off for the first time about President Barack Obama’s new plan to send around 450 troops to Iraq.
“Just adding another few hundred troops doing more of the same is not likely to make much of a difference,” Gates said. “I think that we have to figure out what our strategy is. We should’ve had that strategy a year ago.”
Gates had advocated for leaving a residual force in Iraq, and has long opposed a complete U.S. troop withdrawal there.
“As long as we had a significant presence in Iraq, one of the benefits of our senior military leaders there was the ability to influence the choice of senior Iraqi leaders, and to do so on the basis of competence and their leadership capabilities,” he said.
Without that oversight, he told Couric, the military has been overtaken by incompetent and corrupt leaders.
“Part of the problem with Iraqi troops is that the trainingRead More »from Gates on Obama's handling of Iraq: 'we have to figure out what our strategy is'