Defense Secretary Robert Gates Says Article Mischaracterizes Iran Memo

By American Forces Press Service
April 18, 2010

WASHINGTON, April 18, 2010 - Defense Secretary Robert M. Gates released a statement tonight stating that a New York Times article mischaracterized the purpose and intent of his January memo to the National Security Advisor regarding Iran. The full text of the statement follows:

"The New York Times sources who revealed my January memo to the National Security Advisor mischaracterized its purpose and content. With the Administration's pivot to a pressure track on Iran earlier this year, the memo identified next steps in our defense planning process where further interagency discussion and policy decisions would be needed in the months and weeks ahead.

"The memo was not intended as a 'wake up call' or received as such by the President's national security team. Rather, it presented a number of questions and proposals intended to contribute to an orderly and timely decision making process. There should be no confusion by our allies and adversaries that the United States is properly and energetically focused on this question and prepared to act across a broad range of contingencies in support of our interests."