Sunday, May 01, 2011


The news tonight also puts a different light on some of the reshuffling of major posts. The move of Panetta from CIA to Defense makes more sense. If this was an intelligence victory, as seems to be the case, then moving the person in charge of that to head up the remaining operations in the area offers continuity.

Petraeus in at CIA strikes me more as trying to keep him out of the upcoming presidential contest than anything else, though, again, this takes some rethinking. It may be that the general understood he would not be able to contest once OBL had been disposed of as this will be the horse BHO rides to victory next year, and is content to bide his time for 2016.

But the interesting story to tease out of here is what was Panetta's involvement in this operation and why is this leading to him going to replace Gates at Defense rather than have him remain at the CIA?



Koshem Bos said...

Totally agree with your assessment.

Panetta is a natural choice for defense with or without Osama, especially after a stint at CIA without the typical back stubbing it comes with.

Petraeus goes to the CIA for non-CIA reasons. My money is on the opening of the option to leave Afghanistan before 2012. With Petraeus that would have been much more difficult.

Petraeus agreed to the move. He may bet that 2012 is not a good year for him to run for president. 2016, after the Obama disaster, he'll be a shoe in.

portia.vz said...

Panetta, Panetta... What does his name mean? Little Bread? Muffin?
Anyways, wasn't he the guy back in. 2008 who told the Clintonistas to get over their sense of entitlement?
So, Muffin is moving up in the world. Why am I not surprised. Haven't we seen this game before?

Anglachel said...

Hey, lay off Leon, Portia. He's a mensch.

More specifically, he's a old fashioned conservative from the Monterey Bay area who started life as a socially responsible Republican (yes, Virginia, there once actually was such a beast in the political zoo...) and then got harrassed out of the party by Nixon for refusing to go along with the crap we now know as Movement Conservatism.

He's a process guy more than anything, and was a good selection to bring something like normalcy (yes, yes, realtive term...) to Langley after Cheney's regime.

This is also someone who was part of the Clinton WH when Bill was trying to get Bin Laden but kept getting stymied by the refusal of the careerists at CIA and DoD to work with that white trash Southern guy to catch some no-account towelhead out in Afghanistan. Read Richard Clarke's "Against All Enemies" for the real account of the early hunt for Bin Laden. Anyway, Panetta was Chief of Staff during part of that time, so he would have been in on it. It must have been satisfying to get that nemisis.


CMike said...

Anglachel, this one's for you.