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We Are “Exploring Our Options” re Iran?

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Posted on April 18 2010 7:32 pm
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A Reuters article entitled U.S. considers options to curb Iran’s nuclear program just bubbled up on Drudge. The timing and content are interesting.

Defense Secretary Robert Gates, releasing a statement on Sunday about a secret memorandum he sent to the White House in January, said he identified “next steps in our defense planning process” that would be reviewed by decision makers in the coming weeks and months.

“There should be no confusion by our allies and adversaries that the United States is properly and energetically focused on this question and prepared to act across a broad range of contingencies in support of our interests,” Gates said in the statement, issued to refute characterizations of the memo in a New York Times report.

[…]

The [NY] Times reported on Saturday that Gates’s memo was meant as a warning to the White House that the United States lacked an effective strategy to curb Iran’s steady progress toward nuclear capability.

[…]

In his statement, Gates said: “The memo was not intended as a ‘wake up call’ or received as such by the president’s national security team. Rather, it presented a number of questions and proposals intended to contribute to an orderly and timely decision-making process.”

One can read a lot of tea leaves here, but one reasonable interpretation is Gates — who is by no means a fool — may be reaching the end of his tether where the President’s non-defense policies are concerned.  I predicted previously that Gates wouldn’t last Obama’s first term, I am now convinced of it.  He strikes me as someone who sincerely thought he could change things from the inside only to realize he’s never really been on the inside.

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