US Defense Secretary travelling to India in 'run-down' military aircraft

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Washington, Jan.19 (ANI): US Defense Secretary Robert Gates, who is arriving in New Delhi tonight, is travelling in a military plane that has a run-down feel about it.

According to media accompanying the CIA and White House veteran who has served seven presidents and is regarded as "very big fish" in Washington and well beyond, the military aircraft though fitted with all the accoutrements, has something of the feel of a run-down hospital ward.

According to a Financial Times report,the plane undertaking the 15-hour-long journey, has carpets that are shabby, grimy knobs and dials aplenty and the decor could have been put together by a late-period Soviet interior designer..

Gates has an enviable record of working for President George W. Bush, during which time he presided over the successful surge in Iraq. This has given him massive clout in the Obama administration, and his support for sending 30,000 more troops may well have been decisive in the recent debate over Afghanistan.

Himself a low-key guy, Gates slipped into jeans as soon as he was on board the airplane. He is known to deal with problems with a common sense approach.

Though, there is no mistaking America's might, a second aircraft is also making the trip to India as a back-up. (ANI)

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