MUNICH, Germany – Lingering anger inover the U.S. invasion of Iraq explains why some allies are reluctant to heed U.S. calls for more , said Friday. It was his first public acknowledgment of such a link to the Iraq war.
Gates said he would attempt in a speech here Sunday at an international security conference to decouple perceptions of the Iraq war, in whichhas no fighting role, from views of , where NATO is in charge of the fighting but has fallen short on commanders’ requests for more troops.
On a flight tofrom , where he attended two days of NATO talks dominated by Afghanistan, Gates associated with what lay behind Europe’s general skepticism about fighting in Afghanistan.
“From our perspective, I worry that for many Europeans the missions in Iraq and Afghanistan are confused,” he told reporters traveling with him, implicitly acknowledging a political cost of the Iraq invasion.