Monday, October 11, 2010

"Obama's War With the Pentagon"

Barack Obama talks with Joe Biden, Gen. David Petraeus, Def. Sec. Robert Gates, National Security Council Chief of Staff Denis McDonough, and Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff Admiral Mike Mullen on June 23, 2010. (Photo: Pete Souza / The White House)

Peter Beinart:
The conventional wisdom is that Obama chose Donilon because he’s already the guy who makes the trains run on time. But it’s also possible that he chose him because Obama knows that he is headed for a bureaucratic knife fight over Afghanistan, and in that internal struggle, he no longer wants someone like Jones who plays both sides. Instead, he wants someone who will help him wind down America’s Afghan adventure, no matter how hard he has to fight Petraeus and company to do it. If that’s true, promoting Donilon may be the most important foreign policy pick Obama has yet made. Because unless Obama begins to extricate the U.S. from the Afghan war next year, it will swallow his foreign policy, and perhaps his presidency itself. MORE...

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