Petraeus to lead CIA; Panetta moves to Pentagon

Leon Panetta, a longtime congressman, former chief of staff to President Clinton and now director of the CIA, will be nominated to replace Robert Gates as secretary of defense, according to the Associated Press.

Gen. David Petraeus, now leading the NATO effort in Afghanistan, will reportedly replace Panetta at the CIA. That’s an interesting move on several counts, confirming that Petraeus intends to follow the Colin Powell/George Marshall model and be a major policy player in Washington for years to come, while staying clear of electoral politics.

The low-key Gates, initially appointed by President Bush to replace the discredited and more flamboyant Donald Rumsfeld, has been the right man in the right place for a long time now. Nobody’s irreplaceable, and Panetta brings his own strengths and credentials to the job. But it’s hard to conceive of someone doing a better job than Gates did during a particularly challenging time in the Pentagon.

– Jay Bookman

237 comments Add your comment

Finn McCool

April 27th, 2011
8:20 am

Finn McCool

April 27th, 2011
8:22 am

I just hope Panetta knows what we think he knows that what he really should know and we also know that he knows that….

Peadawg

April 27th, 2011
8:24 am

Off topic but interesting considering out current spending problem:

Obama is approving to send $25 million to “non-lethal” Libya rebels. And we’re supposed to believe him when he says he wants to cut spending? What a fcking joke.

stands for decibels

April 27th, 2011
8:25 am

Panetta?

Thanks, it looks delicious!

AmVet - A conservative is a man with two perfectly good legs who, however, has never learned how to walk forward. ~Franklin D. Roosevelt

April 27th, 2011
8:26 am

Finn, let’s hope he’s not another Einsteen, like this one was…

“We know there are known knowns: there are things we know we know. We also know there are known unknowns: that is to say we know there are things we know we don’t know. But there are also unknown unknowns — the ones we don’t know we don’t know.” —Defense Secretary Donald Rumsfeld, Defense Department briefing, Fe. 12, 2002

Finn McCool

April 27th, 2011
8:26 am

The one real known unknown: what that thing is on Trump’s head.

PJ

April 27th, 2011
8:27 am

Leon Panetta has some resume.

Finn McCool

April 27th, 2011
8:28 am

But there are also unknown unknowns — the ones we don’t know we don’t know.”

It just doesn’t get any better than that. That’s like a line right outta Faulkner.

TaxPayer

April 27th, 2011
8:28 am

There’s clearly something going on behind the scenes. Maybe a showdown soon on the DoD budget and how to make bigger cuts. I can only hope.

USinUK

April 27th, 2011
8:29 am

Finn – :lol: – sometimes you take the SecDef you have rahter than the SecDef you want

Panetta as Chief of Staff – oh, heck yeah.
Panetta as Head of CIA – mmmm, well, okay
Panetta as SecDef – well, at least he served: (from Wiki) In 1964, he joined the United States Army as a Second Lieutenant. There he received the Army Commendation Medal, and was discharged in 1966 as a First Lieutenant … but, really, I stand with my first reaction … WTF??!!

PJ

April 27th, 2011
8:29 am

AmVet – No wonder we attacked a country who do not attack. All these unknowns.

DebbieDoRight

April 27th, 2011
8:30 am

Finn: The one real known unknown: what that thing is on Trump’s head.

:lol: :lol: :lol:

USinUK

April 27th, 2011
8:30 am

Finn and AmVet – I don’t know what it says about me, but I totally got that quote when Rummy said that – felt bad for him that he got so much stick for it.

jm

April 27th, 2011
8:31 am

Jay 6:25pm (yesterday) agreed.

As far as Panetta / Petraeus. Um, who’s going to be running Afghanistan now?

Finn McCool

April 27th, 2011
8:31 am

from Wiki:

He is credited with developing the budget package that would eventually result in the balanced budget of 1998.

Ahha. He is going to gut the military! Hooooray!

AmVet - A conservative is a man with two perfectly good legs who, however, has never learned how to walk forward. ~Franklin D. Roosevelt

April 27th, 2011
8:32 am

PJ, et al.

Rumsfeld was the only SecDef in modern American history to make McNamara look good.

Likewise, Cheney was the only VP in modern American history to make Spriro Agnew look good…

Now, cue up the Bushbots with their brilliant observations that those guys are no longer in power.

For supposed elephants, the neo-cons have the memories of tabby cats…

Part and parcel of the (W)orst ever…

Jay

April 27th, 2011
8:33 am

I too thought that “unknowns” riff was one of Rummy’s better moments.

jm

April 27th, 2011
8:33 am

“But it’s hard to conceive of someone doing a better job than Gates did during a particularly challenging time in the Pentagon.”

Yeah, he’s about as good as they come. One wishes for his kind of leadership and management out of the White House and Congress….

PJ

April 27th, 2011
8:34 am

TaxPayer @8:28 am – Interesting observation.

Southern Comfort (aka The Man)

April 27th, 2011
8:34 am

I don’t know about this pick. Since I shave my head, I won’t be pulling my hair out, but I’ll probably scratch a crater or two in my scalp trying to figure this one out. Hopefully, he’ll end up better at Sec of Def than Rumsfeld. I think Gates has been the best that I can recall in my lifetime.

Obama is approving to send $25 million to “non-lethal” Libya rebels. And we’re supposed to believe him when he says he wants to cut spending? What a fcking joke.

Yep, and McCain (GOP) was over there begging Obama to do more. And the GOP wants to cut spending more than Obama. You’re a fool if you believe either party.

Finn McCool

April 27th, 2011
8:35 am

Let’s face facts, folks. We can whip the rest of the world’s countries with just a handful of military divisions.

And we sure as heck don’t need soldiers in Italy watching the pasta trees and in Germany watching the knockwurst and streudel trees.

USinUK

April 27th, 2011
8:35 am

“For supposed elephants, the neo-cons have the memories of tabby cats…”

hey! as the former mom to the world’s coolest tabby, could you please not malign them thusly??!!

Granny Godzilla

April 27th, 2011
8:37 am

Best wishes gentlemen.

May you serve America wisely and faithfully.

kayaker 71

April 27th, 2011
8:37 am

Patraeus will have a job for years to come, no matter who is in the WH. Bozo seems to be good, however, in rat holing his competition. First Hillary to SOS, now Patraeus to CIA. Patraeus will someday make a good president, sooner rather than later.

AmVet - A conservative is a man with two perfectly good legs who, however, has never learned how to walk forward. ~Franklin D. Roosevelt

April 27th, 2011
8:38 am

ex-pat,

It was just highly illustrative of the gang that not only couldn’t shoot straight, they seldom could talk straight.

A pack of walking malapropisms, BS and broken promises…

I have one too. An awesome beast. But I’m pretty certain that she has a very small cerebral cortex…

Jay

April 27th, 2011
8:39 am

Finn, the real job of a SecDef isn’t to win battles overseas. It’s to win battles in Washington.

Thus a lot of our problems.

PJ

April 27th, 2011
8:39 am

Rumsfeld was so bad even Bush had to get rid of him. Then he has the nerve to go on a book tour and hawk his unknowns all over again and act as if he had nothing to do with anything that went wrong.

larry

April 27th, 2011
8:39 am

But there are also unknown unknowns — the ones we don’t know we don’t know.”

Reminds me of another famous saying……………..involving someone who is no longer in power either

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=m_N1OjGhIFc

Peadawg

April 27th, 2011
8:40 am

” You’re a fool if you believe either party.”

Good point, SC.

UGA1999

April 27th, 2011
8:40 am

Come on Jay….there is nothing in your post that is slamming the GOP…..amazing! Great work.

Doggone/GA

April 27th, 2011
8:40 am

“Let’s face facts, folks. We can whip the rest of the world’s countries with just a handful of military divisions”

Sure, that’s why we’re still in both Afghanistan and Iraq after 10 years. We helped win a WORLD WAR in less than half that time.

Southern Comfort (aka The Man)

April 27th, 2011
8:42 am

Finn

We need soldiers in Germany. When I have family stationed there, I have access to the good German beer. :)

TnGelding

April 27th, 2011
8:42 am

Good grief! Is available talent that scarce? We need new blood and new thinking. What we’re doing ain’t working, folks.

USinUK

April 27th, 2011
8:42 am

“But I’m pretty certain that she has a very small cerebral cortex…”

if they only had opposable thumbs, cats would rule the world.

USinUK

April 27th, 2011
8:43 am

Jay – “Finn, the real job of a SecDef isn’t to win battles overseas. It’s to win battles in Washington.”

damn. well said!

Jay

April 27th, 2011
8:43 am

Bad as Rumsfeld was, and as self-deluded as he could sometimes be, I’d still say that the single worst appointment made by the Bush administration was Paul Brenner to head the Iraq reconstruction. Even worse than Brownie at FEMA.

Finn McCool

April 27th, 2011
8:43 am

I’m not against him in that role – I’m sure Obama had a good reason to choose him. I just hope he starts paring down the DoD – cutting bases, etc..

stands for decibels

April 27th, 2011
8:44 am

This pair of moves doesn’t seem all that WTFish to me; it seems in line with Obama’s no-drama approach to such appointments.

Only real question now is, how can the GOP make this out to be the worst thing since the heartbreak of psoriasis? (or they might surprise me and say, collectively, “yeah, works for us…”)

carlosgvv

April 27th, 2011
8:44 am

USinUK

I feel the same way about Panetta. There is something about him that gives off vibes suggesting a weak bleeding heart liberal. I have visions of him running around with a piece of paper in his hand yelling “peace in our time”.

TnGelding

April 27th, 2011
8:44 am

Somebody tell the prez we don’t have 25 cents.

UGA1999

April 27th, 2011
8:45 am

Here we go….Jay talking about W and his bad appointments….blame bush blame bush blame bush blah blah blah.

Southern Comfort (aka The Man)

April 27th, 2011
8:45 am

Even worse than Brownie at FEMA.

:shock:

I consider Roseanne Barr’s national anthem better than that appointment. Damn, that’s bad……

ty webb

April 27th, 2011
8:45 am

Gates did a great Job, and is one of the only guys in Washington held in high regard by both “sides”.

Road Scholar

April 27th, 2011
8:46 am

Peadawg: Good morning! Yes they want to cut the budget, but didn’t the Repubs just approve an increase to the defense budget? With all the talk about Medicare, not one penny has been cut from defense! We are alledgedly reducing troops in Iraq and Afganastan this year, have a minimum effot in Lybia, and now the saber rattling people want something done with Syria! Didn’t Gates offer/reccomend a cut in the military budget?

Before I end, Mister Gates has been a breath of fresh air. Sir, thank you for your service and leadership. Presidential candidate?

TnGelding

April 27th, 2011
8:46 am

Brenner was given too much power for an impossible task. Bush should have been making those decisions.

Jay

April 27th, 2011
8:47 am

Sorry UGA. You no doubt want to talk about the MARTA incident again, right?

Here, maybe I can help:

http://www.wikihow.com/Start-a-Blog

Redneck Convert (R---and proud of it)

April 27th, 2011
8:48 am

The one real known unknown: what that thing is on Trump’s head.

Well, if you had of been reading my stuff you’d know. It’s a fox squirrel. And if you don’t know what a fox squirrel is ask Sister Dusty. She’s got one that keeps eating the bird seed she puts out.

All I got to say is it’s going to be awful hard for Gen. Petraeus to run for President with all the stuff to take care of at CIA, and there goes the last hope to get rid of Obama in 2012. The rest of the canadates we got couldn’t win a election for class president in kindergarten. Heck, I’m not sure I could vote for one of them. Unless it’s Ron Paul. Now there’s a man that don’t like Those People and Those Other People and wants to cut out all the welfare. If he wasn’t such a nut case he’d take the country by storm. It’s just a shame he was born a little touched in the head.

Have a good Wednesday everybody.

TnGelding

April 27th, 2011
8:48 am

Brownie got a bad rap. He didn’t get the support he was promised.

USinUK

April 27th, 2011
8:48 am

:lol:

well played, sir!

Peadawg

April 27th, 2011
8:49 am

Jay @ 8:47

BAZINGA!!!!!

AmVet - A conservative is a man with two perfectly good legs who, however, has never learned how to walk forward. ~Franklin D. Roosevelt

April 27th, 2011
8:49 am

Today’s lesson from the Republican Dictionary of Made Up Definitions.

Slamming/bashing – providing factual information.

Blaming – holding accountable (see slamming/bashing)

Punishing – having the super-rich and corporations paying taxes.

Evil – used whenever an accurate adjective eludes the writer.

Conservative – not the foggiest notion.

UGA1999

April 27th, 2011
8:49 am

Jay…..great job of changing the subject. Who brought up Marta. You must have been looking day and night for that article. Nice job joker.

USinUK

April 27th, 2011
8:49 am

carlos – I’ve met the guy – he’s a tougher cookie than you would think

nah – I just like my SecDef’s to have a little more than 2 years experience in the military. color me silly.

stands for decibels

April 27th, 2011
8:50 am

McCain (GOP) was over there begging Obama to do more.

I stand with Peadawg. Yea, verily, this eightpence-per-capita spending measure is an outrage.

jm

April 27th, 2011
8:50 am

Jay 8:47 :)

RE: New Afghanistan General – Lieutenant General John Allen would take over from Gen. Petraeus, the Associated Press reported

http://www.ft.com/cms/s/0/220ed636-70c5-11e0-9b1d-00144feabdc0.html?ftcamp=rss#axzz1KjA3BfsG

UGA1999

April 27th, 2011
8:50 am

USin…..kind of like you would think the President would actually need some political or business experience???

USinUK

April 27th, 2011
8:52 am

Jay – 8:43 – agree with your assessment of Bremer – sweet jeebus, bringing in all those Heritage Foundation flunkies to oversee rebuilding – and we wonder how billions of dollars has gone missing …

USinUK

April 27th, 2011
8:52 am

UGA – Um, hate to tell you this, but the current president has both

Peadawg

April 27th, 2011
8:52 am

“McCain (GOP) was over there begging Obama to do more.”

Seems like Obama is listening a little with this $25 million in aide. Which is sad…

jm

April 27th, 2011
8:52 am

RE John Allen

http://www.centcom.mil/en/about-centcom/leadership/

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/John_R._Allen

I hope he can wrap this sh-t up successfully and reasonably swiftly…..

UGA1999

April 27th, 2011
8:54 am

USin….OH you are right being a community organizer means you are qualified to be commander and cheif. My bad.

jm

April 27th, 2011
8:54 am

Amazing Wiki has already been updated with the Afghan info…. crowdsourcing is amazing.

USinUK

April 27th, 2011
8:55 am

UGA – served in his state leg as well as in Congress

and his work experience is more than a community organizer, regardless of what FOX and the voices in your head tell you.

jm

April 27th, 2011
8:56 am

A Marine Corps guy is probably a good fit for Afghanistan….

Southern Comfort (aka The Man)

April 27th, 2011
8:56 am

AmVet - A conservative is a man with two perfectly good legs who, however, has never learned how to walk forward. ~Franklin D. Roosevelt

April 27th, 2011
8:56 am

The previous CiC had qualifications!

Almost all of them bad. A litany of failures and screw ups.

Throw in being a mental lightweight – by presidential standards – and voila!

Cons apparently are almost completely incapable of accurately assessing candidates for high office…

UGA1999

April 27th, 2011
8:57 am

USin….I know I know…..

President, United States of America, 2009-present
Senator, United States Senate, 2005-2008
Keynote Speaker, Democratic National Convention, 2004
Senator, Illinois State Senate, 1996-2004

It is still hilarious to hear the lefty’s talk about experience levels from the GOP. Glass houses.

Paul

April 27th, 2011
8:58 am

Thanks to SecDef Gates. Right man at the right time, made the tough calls (Middle East, fired the AF Chief of Staff and Sec of AF, pushed drones as a mainstay in our inventory, initiated Def cuts, moved to whack away at the huge Pentagon bureaucracy) and he had a good knowledge of what was on in the world from his time as CIA director.

Panetta’s from CIA, let’s hope he meets the bar where Gates placed it.

AmVet – Jay

“I too thought that “unknowns” riff was one of Rummy’s better moments.”

That riff is straight out of the coursework for senior officer professional education. Rumsfeld gave it nearly verbatim. It’s taught as a means of introducing caution into the operational planning process (in other words ‘you don’t know everything about the enemy you’d like to think you know and you’d better understand there’s a whole lot you don’t know… if you don’t understand that, you could lose).

MountainMan

April 27th, 2011
8:58 am

There shouldn’t be enough fluff in the DOD budget that you can off and fight a war in Libya without having to get an appropriation fot it.

USinUK

April 27th, 2011
8:59 am

UGA – “It is still hilarious to hear the lefty’s talk about experience levels from the GOP.”

dude, not only do you have voices shreiking in your head, you seem to have reading comprehension difficulties, as well.

who here criticized a GOPper for experience?

(or do Leon Panetta suddenly become a Republican??!!) :shock:

USinUK

April 27th, 2011
9:00 am

do should be did

Donovan

April 27th, 2011
9:00 am

It was a joke to put a political hack and someone without any military experience into the job of CIA director in the first place. To further the idea of putting Panetta into the job of Sec. of Def. is another example of liberal disconnect. In these times of terrorism against an uncivilized, but clever Islamic enemy, we don’t need political hacks running our security apparatus. The CIA will gain in operational strength with this proposed move, but the DOD will become a rubber stamp for an inept community organizer trying to figure out foreign policy. Just look at the Libyian mess. Just look back at the Iranian hostage rescue failure of the Carter administration. I would have to think that all of the liberals who blog this site and all of the liberals who voted for their Hope & Change president would agree with me. You don’t appoint hacks to do a warrior’s job.

Southern Comfort (aka The Man)

April 27th, 2011
9:01 am

Guess what y’all.

Scout’s about to orgasm himself to death. CNN just announced that Obama will release his long form birth certificate.

TaxPayer

April 27th, 2011
9:02 am

I’m glad Jay hasn’t shown me the door in such brash terms.

Keep Up the Good Fight!

April 27th, 2011
9:02 am

It’s going to be fun to see the right squirm on the “experience” issue if they get someone like Trump against someone with 4 years experience as President after repeatedly playing the “experience” card in an “unsportspersonlike” manner

[Kudos to SoCo but have to correct to gender neutral — especially as there are now more women holding advance degrees and I need to suck up to our soon to be new overlords. Hail to Granny USinUK and DDR! :D }

AmVet

April 27th, 2011
9:02 am

ex-pat, Panetta left the dark side back when Tricky Dick was working on his hit lists…

Panetta switched to the Democratic Party in 1971, because he thought that the Republican Party was moving away from the political center.

UGA1999

April 27th, 2011
9:03 am

USin….you said…”nah – I just like my SecDef’s to have a little more than 2 years experience in the military. color me silly.”

TaxPayer

April 27th, 2011
9:03 am

CNN just announced that Obama will release his long form birth certificate.

NO WAY, YOU SAY! HE CAN”T DO THAT! WHY CAN’T I STOP YELLING!

jm

April 27th, 2011
9:03 am

on and off topic. this covers gates, the budget deficit, and is good news for Savannah (re Gulfstream)

General Dynamics Net Rises 3.5% on Gulfstream Unit Profits (1)

By Gopal Ratnam

April 27 (Bloomberg) — General Dynamics Corp., the maker of Abrams battle tanks and Gulfstream jets, said first-quarter profit rose 3.5 percent aided by higher margins at the business- jet unit.

Net income increased to $618 million, or $1.64 a share, from $597 million, or $1.53 a share, a year earlier, the Falls Church, Virginia-based company said today in a statement. The average of 20 analysts surveyed by Bloomberg was for $1.61 a share. Sales gained less than 1 percent to $7.8 billion.

General Dynamics’s defense business was dealt a setback after Defense Secretary Robert Gates proposed in January to cancel the company’s Expeditionary Fighting Vehicle it was building for the Marine Corps. The loss may be offset with Gates’s proposal to upgrade Abrams tanks and the Army’s Stryker vehicles, both made by the company.

With U.S. defense spending coming under pressure Chief Executive Officer Jay Johnson has said the Gulfstream unit will remain the company’s “growth engine.”

General Dynamics, which also makes Virginia-class nuclear submarines, in January forecast full-year profit of $7 to $7.10 a share. Analysts’ average estimate is for profit of $7.12 a share on sales of $33.8 billion.

General Dynamics gained 50 cents to $72.64 yesterday in New York Stock Exchange composite trading. The shares gained 2.4 percent this year before today. The Standard and Poor’s Supercomposite Aerospace & Defense Index has gained 10.3 percent in the same period.

UGA1999

April 27th, 2011
9:04 am

Keep up….scared of Trump already eh? Nice!

Keep Up the Good Fight!

April 27th, 2011
9:04 am

New conspiracy theory in 3…2….1

Conspiracy Theorist

April 27th, 2011
9:04 am

SoCo 9:01 – its not real

TnGelding

April 27th, 2011
9:04 am

Who’s fighting a war in Libya?

jm

April 27th, 2011
9:05 am

RE Birth Certificate – Sad statement about the status of politics in america. But glad the fiasco is over, I hope.

Southern Comfort (aka The Man)

April 27th, 2011
9:06 am

“unsportspersonlike” manner

:lol: :lol: :lol:

jm

April 27th, 2011
9:06 am

Keep – your double 9:04’s are good work, I’m impressed.

UGA1999

April 27th, 2011
9:07 am

jm…..I agree.

USinUK

April 27th, 2011
9:07 am

UGA – 9:03 – you really CAN’T read, can you – or have you not bothered to read what today’s topic is.

jm

April 27th, 2011
9:08 am

Rep Eric Cantor (R-VA) is wearing thin…..

Peadawg

April 27th, 2011
9:08 am

“CNN just announced that Obama will release his long form birth certificate.”

Aw so sad…. :roll:

Now can we move on?

USinUK

April 27th, 2011
9:08 am

Donovan – scroll back a page – Panetta DOES have military experience.

PJ

April 27th, 2011
9:08 am

Long form birth certicate is on the White House Web Site. Just released.

UGA1999

April 27th, 2011
9:09 am

I simply copied and pasted what you said…..do you have a problem with your own words. Have you ever been checked for schizophrenia?

USinUK

April 27th, 2011
9:09 am

AmVet – 9:02 – criminey. if he thought that in the 70s, god only KNOWS what he thinks about them today

UGA1999

April 27th, 2011
9:09 am

Peadawg….I think we all (both left and right) hope so.

BADA BING

April 27th, 2011
9:10 am

Peadog…..Bazinga? Are you a closet nerd?

jm

April 27th, 2011
9:10 am

Not unbiased. But the liberals here will yuk this up…

Why Obama Will Get Second Term in White House: Ralph Nader (1)
http://noir.bloomberg.com/apps/news?pid=20601039&sid=aujycMJqgyt0

But don’t look at anything else while you’re at the Bloomberg site. You might learn something.

Jay

April 27th, 2011
9:10 am

Gates had also served just a two-year stint as an Air Force officer.

Peadawg

April 27th, 2011
9:10 am

“Peadawg….I think we all (both left and right) hope so.”

If we do move on…Cynthia may have to find another job. 3 out of last 8 articles have been about “birthers”.

getalife

April 27th, 2011
9:11 am

Gates did a good job and should be honored for his service.

Wonder who will take Hilary’s place?

bithers owe the President an apology today.

trump will drop out.