"Well, first of all, I would say, based on 27 years in CIA and four and a half years in this job, most governments lie to each other. That's the way business gets done."
That was Defense Secretary Robert Gates' straight talk in response to the phony outrage by Senator Patrick Leahy on the news of Pakistan arresting 5 CIA informants following Osama bin Laden's killing by US Navy Seals in Abbotabad.
Here is the text of the exchange between Gates and Leahy during the US Senate hearing on Pakistan that began with Leahy asking Gates how long the U.S. will be willing to "support governments that lie to us?"
GATES: Well, first of all, I would say, based on 27 years in CIA and four and a half years in this job, most governments lie to each other. That's the way business gets done.
LEAHY: Do they also arrest the people that help us when they say they're allies?
LEAHY: Not often.
GATES: And -- and sometimes they send people to spy on us, and they're our close allies. So...
LEAHY: And we give aid to them.
GATES: ... that's the real world that we deal with.
Outgoing Secretary Gates is clearly not a politician. He does not share the basic consensus among mainstream US politicians and media about American exceptionalism which gives them a broad license to criticize and denigrate others for some of the same or worse transgressions(or accomplishments) that the Americans are themselves guilty (or proud) of.
Another instance of plain talk by an American leader is the one where former Secretary of State Henry Kissinger is reported to have said:
"There is only one thing more dangerous than being America's enemy; it's being an American ally".
With the recent series of extraordinary humiliations inflicted by Obama administration on their Pakistani allies, I think the current Pakistani leadership can wholeheartedly attest to Dr. Kissinger's enduring assertion.
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