President Barack Obama’s “team of rivals” first-term cabinet has come back to haunt him, following surprisingly blunt critiques of his leadership and top aides by ex-Pentagon boss Robert Gates.
Gates, the Washington Republican lifer who served six presidents in senior national security jobs, sent political shockwaves through Washington after his unsparing assessments of the Obama administration in his new book, leaked to top newspapers.
Tell-all memoirs by former administration officials looking to gild their retirement nest eggs and bolster their own legacies are nothing new — and uniformly infuriate presidents and top subordinates whichever party runs the White House.
But the Gates bombshell was so remarkable because of the pedigree of the former defense secretary and CIA chief, his long experience as a confidant of presidents, and his reputation for unruffled integrity and discretion.
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