President Obama has named Leon Panetta to replace Robert Gates as SecDef, and General David Patraeus to replace Panetta at CIA.
Glad to hear Panetta’s alive. I was wondering.
Here’s my quick take. Patraeus seems completely out of place at CIA. He’ll be completely isolated with no real relationships within the agency. He should be head of the Joint Chiefs–or SecDef, although it’s problematic having the Pentagon headed by a man immediately out of uniform.
But Obama is at war with the Pentagon, and that conflict is going to intensify due to the budget issues, the incompetence and incoherence of Obama’s “campaign” in Libya, and the Afghan ulcer. Having Patraeus as top hat at the Joint Chiefs (or SecDef) would place a well-known, popular, and smart individual opposite Obama in that battle. So, he’d rather have a political type–a reliable Democrat politician to boot–in the Pentagon to help him in his fight with the rest of the building–and the rest of the military. At CIA, Patraeus might as well be on the moon–which is just fine with Obama.