Robert Burns
Associated Press
December 8, 2008

Editor’s note: Iran-Contra principle, henchman for CIA director William Casey, one of the founders of al-Qaeda, and Bush crime family intimate Robert Gates represents Obama’s “change,” that is to say more of the same.

For a Democrat whose opposition to the Iraq war was a campaign centerpiece, President-elect Barack Obama is remarkably in sync with Defense Secretary Robert Gates on many core defense and national security issues — even Iraq.

The list of similarities suggests the early focus of Obama’s Pentagon may not change dramatically from President George W. Bush’s.

  • A d v e r t i s e m e n t

Given that Obama made the unprecedented decision to keep the incumbent Republican defense secretary, it would seem natural to expect that they see eye to eye on at least some major defense issues. But the extent of their shared priorities is surprising, given Obama’s campaign criticisms of Bush’s defense policies.

In his first public comments about signing on with the incoming administration, Gates said Tuesday that in his decisive meeting with the president-elect in November, they talked more about how his appointment would be made and how it would work in practice, than about substantive policy issues.

The two “share a common view about the importance of integrating all elements of American power to make us more secure and defeat the threats of the 21st century,” Brooke Anderson, the Obama transition office’s chief national security spokeswoman, said Saturday.

She said Obama “appreciates Secretary Gates’ pragmatism and competence and his commitment to a sustainable national security strategy that is built on bipartisan consensus here at home.”

The apparent harmony between Gates and Obama on broad defense and national security aims is on display in a Foreign Affairs magazine article by the defense chief that was released Thursday. Gates lays out a comprehensive agenda based on the Bush administration’s new National Defense Strategy. In numerous ways it meshes with the defense priorities that Obama espoused during the campaign.

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