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Born at the Crest of the Empire

Monday, January 05, 2009

Panetta to head CIA?

Leon Panetta, a "budget and organizational" guy with next to no intel experience, seems a very odd choice to head the CIA.

I'm guessing there must be some big operational appointment below him, to work in tandem, that we're yet to hear about.

But I'm also wondering if Panetta, the outsider and organizational guy, represents some kind of effort to "get control" of the CIA. What kind of message is in this appointment?

I'll comment further when we get a better picture.

Later: Dem Senate Intel Chair complains she wasn't consulted.
A sign of trouble ahead?

4 Comments:

  • I can only think that Panetta's appointment signals a movement to move the CIA back onto accountability, professionalism and lawfulness. To signal the days of a rogue CIA -- answerable to no one -- are over. I'm sure the operational appointments, as you say, will be staffed by intelligence professionals.

    I look at this as Obama laying down the law that HE is in charge.

    By Blogger -epm, at 2:49 PM  

  • That's exactly what I'm thinking, but what does that say about how Obama views the CIA in the Bush years? Or was that the view of the transition team?

    I have a feeling there's a whole backstory here, things we don't know about, both political and things done or underway by the CIA.

    By Blogger mikevotes, at 3:34 PM  

  • "I have a feeling there's a whole backstory here, things we don't know about,... "

    I think you're right. And I have to be careful about projecting my own ideas onto Obama. That said, I wonder if the confirmation hearings will be dramatic or banal.

    [Speaking of which, do you think Holders confirmation will be all that confrontational or were the Republicans just kicking up dust to attract media attention?]

    By Blogger -epm, at 7:39 PM  

  • Well, I would guess one of them will be confrontational, kind of as a symbol. The question is what are the GOP motivations.

    They could blast Panetta and try to claim Obama's not serious about security. Or they could go after Holder as corruption cronyism.

    They'll be looking for one as an ideological, too far out theree, too, although at this point, I don't know who that'd be.

    By Blogger mikevotes, at 9:33 PM  

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