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Ear to the Ground

Musical Chairs at CIA and Pentagon

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Posted on Apr 27, 2011
U.S. Government

Current CIA Director Leon Panetta.

President Obama is expected to announce Thursday that CIA Director Leon Panetta will be the new defense secretary, replacing Robert Gates, and that the U.S. commander in Afghanistan, Gen. David Petraeus, will head the CIA.

The changes, which were reported as a strong possibility earlier this month, will also bring Lt. Gen. John Allen in to replace Petraeus in Afghanistan and diplomat Ryan Crocker as American ambassador there. The changes will take effect in July, officials say. —KDG

Reuters:

The long-anticipated overhaul could have broad implications for the Obama administration, which is pursuing deeper defense spending cuts in the face of a yawning budget deficit and will start withdrawing troops from Afghanistan this July.

Panetta is a Democratic party insider seen as close to Obama who could be more receptive to deeper defense spending cuts than outgoing Defense Secretary Robert Gates, a holdover from the Bush administration.

Panetta, who turns 73 in June, is a former U.S. representative from California who was chairman of the House Budget Committee. He was former President Bill Clinton’s budget director, then chief of staff.

As well as starting the withdrawal from Afghanistan, the United States is set to pull U.S. forces out entirely from Iraq by the end of 2011, while the future course of its campaign in Libya remains unclear.

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By lifebook, April 28, 2011 at 1:53 am Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

Obama’s doing good job, and almost every concerned man
will approve this switch in Pentagon. Especially now,
when Obama is accused in being non-natural born US
citizen. But he has proved that he is!

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By Atlanta Roofing, April 27, 2011 at 7:57 pm Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

I’d like to see the CIA move back toward being under
clear civilian control. Our “intelligence” community is
far too linked to our “defense” community and therefore
belligerent as a default. This is obviously a bad thing
in that respect.

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By Gil, April 27, 2011 at 3:33 pm Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

Panetta should retire along with Gates.  Time for all of them to smell the roses. 
Strange how youngster Obama is relying so much on the elderly.

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By Inherit The Wind, April 27, 2011 at 11:20 am Link to this comment

Why Patraeus?  I thought there were several Sons of Bush looking for jobs….(face palm).

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johnnyfarout's avatar

By johnnyfarout, April 27, 2011 at 10:30 am Link to this comment

jesus god…we are Rome.

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By M L, April 27, 2011 at 10:26 am Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

I have spent the last two years trying to figure out if Obama is on the side of mainstreet or wallstreet and the military industrial complex. The selection of Betrayus and Panetta( dance of the lemons) now leads me to belive he is on the wrong side. He is subserviant and obediant to the Corporate Cons, Banksters and the Military Industrial Complex. Obama is a nice guy avoiding conflict and believing we can resolve all our probems with a group hug, singing kum ba ya, or drinking a beer on the white house lawn. Unfortunately for us, a nice guy and the American people will finish last again.

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By TDoff, April 27, 2011 at 10:19 am Link to this comment

It will be interesting to see if the politically adept Panetta will have a chance of arm-wrestling the Pentagon into reducing it’s expenditures. If he only cuts the amounts the Generals personally steal, plus what they give to Congressfolk to support their bloated budgets, we’d have enough extra cash on hand to send every kid in the US to Harvard, so they, too, would have a chance to make a**es of themselves as POTUS.
With respect to Petraeus, heading the CIA is as good a place as any to bury his incompetency. No one at the CIA pays any attention to their heads, anyway, it’s a matter of pride with them. They concentrate on not stabbing themselves in the foot with their poison-tipped umbrellas.

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