Robert Gates was right when he said today that the main reason Russia is investing most of its effort into nuclear forces is that reforming conventional forces is much more difficult. We know how it works - it's easier to look for your coins under the lamppost or, in this case, to pretend that nuclear forces have something to do with country's security just because you know how to build missiles.

But Gates does not seem to realize that he is making the same mistake when he says that Russia's investment into nuclear forces "underscores the importance of [U.S.] sustaining a valid nuclear deterrent, a modern nuclear deterrent" as he "hammers home importance of Air Force nuke mission."  Instead of making necessary but hard decisions about the role of nuclear weapons (I would suggest removing nuclear weapons from the Air Force as a good start) he is pretending that if only everybody tries harder things would be as simple and orderly as they used to be during the Cold War.