Defense Secretary Robert Gates said he doesn't particularly enjoy his work as secretary of Defense during wartime, calling the experience "very painful."

"The truth of the matter is, being secretary of war in a time of war is a very painful thing," Gates said in an interview with "60 Minutes" to air Sunday. "How can you like a job when you go to Walter Reed and you know you sent those young men and women in harm's way?"

The effect of being the wartime civilian leader of the country's defense efforts seems to be a negative one, Gates told Katie Couric, who conducted the wide-ranging interview.

"Every single person in combat today I sent there and I never forget that for a second," Gates said. "I don't enjoy my job."

"Whatever I can do to help them, the rest is all fluff as far as I'm concerned," the Defense secretary explained as to why he agreed to stay on the job. "It's my duty and I do it almost exclusively for these young men and women in uniform out there