German Politicians Denounce ‘Shameless’ Gates Letter

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The reactions of German politicians and media commentators to U.S. Secretary of Defense Robert Gates’s request for troop support in southern Afghanistan are striking not only for the virtual unanimity with which the request has been rejected, but above all for their virulence. The reactions were sparked by two reports that appeared on the same day (Jan. 31) in the Sueddeutsche Zeitung and in the Spiegel. The reports referred to a letter from Gates to German Minister of Defense Franz Josef Jung. Whereas the Sueddeutsche Zeitung described the tone of Gates’s letter as “unusually sharp,” unnamed “Ministry of Defense circles” […]

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