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VIDEO: Bill Daley Calls Robert Gates New Book 'Disservice' to President on CBS
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Former White House Chief of Staff to President Obama and CBS News Contributor Bill Daley said that Secretary Robert Gates' decision to release his new book while the Obama Administration is still ongoing is "a disservice," in an interview that was broadcast live today, Jan. 8, 2014 on CBS This Morning (7:00-9:00 AM) on the CBS Television Network. Watch the appearance below!
"I think it's rather unfortunate because in the year that I spent with the President, I saw the exact opposite," Daley told co-hosts Charlie Rose and Norah O'Donnell.
"It's one thing as historians look back on an administration, but in The Middle of it, when you're pursuing a war at the same time, and one that is controversial with the American people and has been very difficult on our military, I think it's just a disservice, to be very frank with you," Daley added.
Excerpts of the interview are below.
CHARLIE ROSE: During Gates' last six months at the Pentagon, Bill Daley was President Obama's chief of staff. He is now a CBS News contributor. Good morning. So here you have a book from the Defense Secretary who says the President wanted a way out, that he didn't have confidence in his commander, David Petraeus, he didn't consider the war his, and he didn't believe in his own strategy.
BILL DALEY, Former White House Chief of Staff to President Obama and CBS News Contributor: I think it's rather unfortunate, because in the year that I spent with the President, I saw the exact opposite, to be very frank with you. I saw a president who was very committed obviously to support the troops, to the policy of trying to decimate al-Qaeda, from Afghanistan, that was their base, to attack the United States. And that was the purpose of the surge and that was the purpose of the action in Afghanistan, was to try and destroy as best we could al-Qaeda.
And we've done over the last number of years a heck of a job for accomplishing that. I think it's unfortunate that we continue this rush for people to run out, and the Secretary, who I have enormous respect for, is very clear in the book of his disgust with Washington and what's become of it. And part of it is based upon a sense that there's too much grandstanding, and this rush to do books by people who leave an administration while the administration is ongoing, I think is unfortunate. It's one thing as historians look back on an administration, but in The Middle of it, when you're pursuing a war at the same time, and one that is controversial with the American people and has been very difficult on our military, I think it's just a disservice, to be very frank with you. I understand while everyone wants to get out there and write a book and get on the circuit, but I think it's unfortunate.