Tuesday, January 21, 2014

Robert Gates Speaks At Texas A&M University For Bush 41 Distinguished Author Series Address

Former Secretary of Defense Robert Gates returned to Texas AandM University (where he was the former University President) to participate in the George Bush Distinguished Author Series and promote his recent book.

My brother-in-law (MIMs BIL) was part of the sold out crowd at the Rudder Auditorium. According to the Bryan/College Station newspaper, all 1,200 copies of the book sold out, which weren't even enough for everyone (2,500) in attendance. Former President  George HW Bush and his wife Barbara were in attendance. The Bush Presidential Library is on the AandM camppus (and is a must visit, if you're in the College Station area).

The event was livestreamed also across the Internet and available on YouTube (you have to go to about 1 hr and 5 mins into the video).

The following photo was tweeted by an unknown photographer showing Gates getting a standing ovation when he came to the stage 

He also reported that Gates took to the stage and said "Howdy" with the crowd giving him back the same greeting. Gates then said, "I wish I could have started every congressional meeting that way!!"

Nothing was a shock that Gates said, according to MIM-BIL. Gates was asked during the QandA afterwards what could change the atmosphere in DC, with Gates replying that all the backstabbing and name calling etc needs to stop.  That when  "the cameras come on and its like a full moon to a werewolf."

Which yes, from my perspective, I'd have to agree. Congressional hearings I've always thought end up like a bunch of blowhards playing to the cameras, in the hopes of getting the hot quote that makes the nightly news.  Few people really do the job of public service.

That includes Robert Gates in my opinion.

If I'd been there, I'd like to have asked Gates why he didn't feel a responsibility to the troops he led as SecDef, resigned, and made his complaints public about the way Obama and Bite Me have mismanaged the wars.  Sure, those of us who care about the future of our nation aren't surpised by what he revealed. He had a reponsibility to this country and the troops to make that known, and especially when we had the opportunity to make a change in 2012.

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