From the previous secretary of protection, a strikingly candid, vividly written account of his adventure serving Presidents George W. Bush and Barack Obama through the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan.
prior to Robert M. Gates bought a choice from the White condo in 2006, he proposal he’d left Washington politics in the back of: after operating for 6 presidents in either the CIA and the nationwide safety Council, he was once satisfied in his function as president of Texas A&M college. but if he was once requested to aid a kingdom mired in wars and to help the troops doing the battling, he responded what he felt used to be the decision of responsibility. Now, during this unsparing memoir, meticulously reasonable in its exams, he's taking us behind the curtain of his approximately 5 years as a secretary at warfare: the battles with Congress, the 2 presidents he served, the army itself, and the mammoth Pentagon paperwork; his efforts to aid Bush flip the tide in Iraq; his function as a guiding, and sometimes dissenting, voice for Obama; the ardent devotion to and love for American soldiers—his “heroes”—he constructed at the activity.
In pertaining to his own trip as secretary, Gates attracts us into the innermost sanctums of presidency and armed forces strength through the top of the Iraq and Afghanistan wars, illuminating iconic figures, important negotiations, and demanding occasions in revealing, intimate aspect. providing unvarnished value determinations of Dick Cheney, Joe Biden, Hillary Clinton, and Presidents Bush and Obama between different key avid gamers, Gates exposes the entire spectrum of behind-closed-doors politicking inside of either the Bush and Obama administrations.
He discusses the good controversies of his tenure—surges in either Iraq and Afghanistan, the right way to take care of Iran and Syria, “Don’t Ask Don’t Tell,” Guantánamo Bay, WikiLeaks—as they performed out in the back of the tv cameras. He brings to existence the placement Room through the Bin encumbered raid. And, searingly, he indicates how congressional debate and motion or state of no activity on every thing from gear budgeting to troop withdrawals used to be frequently influenced, to his expanding depression and anger, extra through celebration politics and media effect than through contributors’ wants to shield our infantrymen and confirm their good fortune.
besides the fact that embroiled he grew to become within the trials of Washington, Gates makes transparent that his center used to be constantly within the most vital theater of his tenure as secretary: front strains. We trip with him to either warfare zones as he meets with active-duty troops and their commanders, awed by means of their braveness, and likewise witness him greet coffin after flag-draped coffin again to U.S. soil, heartbreakingly acutely aware that he signed each deployment order. In frank and poignant vignettes, Gates conveys the human rate of battle, and his admiration for these courageous sufficient to adopt it while useful.
Duty tells a strong and deeply own tale that permits us an unparalleled examine administrations and the wars that experience outlined them.