Former Defense Secretary Robert Gates joined Morning Joe Wednesday to discuss his new book, Duty, saying that "disgraceful" comments by Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid (D., N.V.) did not help troop morale in Iraq and Afghanistan.
"The troops believed and still believe that they were being successful in their mission," Gates said. "So I think they were able, to a certain extent, to set aside the politics here at home."
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But, Gates continued, "When you have somebody like the Senate Majority Leader come out in the middle of the surge and say ‘this war is lost,’ I thought that was one of the most disgraceful things I’ve heard a politician say."
"That sends a riveting message to kids who are putting their lives on the line every day that they’re doing it for nothing," Gates noted, "and that was absolutely not the case."