Robert Gates Has Dementia

by | Jun 11, 2020

Poor old guy has no idea that he is literally the one and only single human man who was secretary of defense of the United States of America at the start of the Libya war in 2011. The way he remembers it, he had nothing to do with the war at all.

“The consequences of an insufficiently planned military intervention can be devastating. Take, for example, the U.S. intervention in Libya in 2011, which I opposed. Once President Barack Obama decided to go in, the administration made two strategic mistakes. The first was agreeing to expand the original NATO humanitarian mission from simply protecting the people of eastern Libya against the forces of Libyan President Muammar al-Qaddafi to toppling the regime. NATO could have drawn a proverbial line in the sand somewhere between the capital, Tripoli, and the eastern city of Benghazi; a no-fly zone and attacks on Qaddafi’s ground forces could have protected the rebels in the East without destroying the government in Tripoli. Under those circumstances, perhaps some kind of political accommodation could have been worked out.

“As I said at the time, Qaddafi had given up his nuclear program and posed no threat to U.S. interests. There is no question he was a loathsome and vicious dictator, but the total collapse of his government allowed more than 20,000 shoulder-fired surface-to-air missiles and countless other weapons from his arsenal to find their way across both Africa and the Middle East, sparked a civil war in 2014 that plunged Libya into years of turmoil, opened the door to the rise of ISIS in the country, and created the opportunity for Russia to claim a role in determining Libya’s future. The country remains in a shambles. As happened in Somalia, Haiti, Afghanistan, and Iraq, expanding the U.S. military mission in Libya beyond the original objective created nothing but trouble.”

Isn’t that hilarious. The guy who doubled and lost Iraq War II, tripled and lost Afghanistan and started the war in Libya, “open[ing] the door to the rise of ISIS in the country,” now says the U.S. needs to retrench a bit so that it can “recover the full range of its powers.”

Hey Bob, remember that time when you were deputy director of the CIA and spent the 1980s backing Saddam Hussein and the Arab-Afghan army while lying so badly about the power of the USSR that you missed the fact it was disintegrating right before your eyes? No wonder you got promoted to secretary of defense. And no wonder you killed so many people for so little reason.

22 of your men kill themselves every day. Just sayin’.

About Scott Horton

Scott Horton is director of the Libertarian Institute, editorial director of, host of Antiwar Radio on Pacifica, 90.7 FM KPFK in Los Angeles, California and podcasts the Scott Horton Show from He's the author of the 2021 book Enough Already: Time to End the War on Terrorism, the 2017 book, Fool's Errand:Time to End the War in Afghanistan, editor of the 2019 book The Great Ron Paul: The Scott Horton Show Interviews 2004–2019 and the 2022 book Hotter Than The Sun: Time to Abolish Nuclear Weapons. He’s conducted more than 6,000 interviews since 2003. Scott lives in Austin, Texas with his wife, Larisa Alexandrovna Horton.

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