Wednesday, April 23, 2008

Petraeus is nominated Centcom CINC

Gen Petraeus has been nominated to head CENTCOM, according to the Washington Post. And Gen Odierno, his deputy, will take over command of ground forces in Iraq. I think this news will be received with great alarm and trepidation in Teheran.

As I've written in the past, I don't think an invasion or bombing campaign of Iran is in the works. What I think will happen (and it's just my own opinion) is that Petraeus plans take a hammer to all the places where Iran has poked its finger; turn its own allies against it with a combination of targeted force and politics.

More important than his battlefield successes in Iraq may be the implied victory in Pentagon politics that his nomination to CENTCOM chief suggests. It's important to remember that before the Surge, Petraeus' ideas were on the margin. Now they are in the mainstream.

One Joker in the pack remains. Who's going to be the next President? The military leadership is important, but the President is Commander in Chief.




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16 Comments:

Blogger Teresita said...

W: One Joker in the pack remains. Who's going to be the next President? The military leadership is important, but the President is Commander in Chief.

If McCain wins, Petraeus will advance to SecDef and be in the chute to run for VP on Miss Condi's ticket in 2012 or 2016, depending on the state of McCain's ticker. If Obama wins, Petraeus will resign rather that oversee the steady dismantling of everything he achieved in Iraq. In that event, he will become the chief military consultant on Fox News, but he won't be consulted very much.

4/23/2008 05:57:00 PM  
Blogger Buckets said...

From what I've heard, I have to agree with Wretchard RE: Iran. I also think that unless Iran does something incredibly stupid and/or initiates open hostilities, the Pentagon has decided they can't stop Teheran from getting the bomb via military means. Whether Israel feels the same way is an entirely different matter.

4/23/2008 06:35:00 PM  
Blogger MEANA55 said...

teresita: If McCain wins, Petraeus will advance to SecDef and be in the chute to run for VP on Miss Condi's ticket in 2012 or 2016, depending on the state of McCain's ticker.

Please see Title 10 U.S.C. 113. There's a ten-year cooling-off period between relief of an active commissioned officer and a SECDEF appointment.

4/23/2008 07:01:00 PM  
Blogger Teresita said...

Okay, thanks Meana55.

4/23/2008 07:23:00 PM  
Blogger El Jefe Maximo said...

If Obama wins, and is as much of a disaster as predicted, Petraeus will probably resist efforts to co-opt him as Clinton did Powell (although Obama would be stupid not to try it). If he does indeed resign, as I imagine he would, I can see something a little bigger in his future than a post wtih Fox News. . .

I think the view that Iran cannot be stopped from obtaining a nuclear weapon by American military means is quite correct, unless the Iranians, for whatever reason, decide, or are induced to decide, to do something stupid first. At best we can slow the program down anyway.

The problem with Iran is not the desire for a nuclear weapon. It's natural that the Iranians (with a long history of regional power and imperial ambition) would want one, and the desire for such pre-dates the present regime. The problem with Iran is not what weapons it has, but the nature of the regime. If Iran had a government with objectives less millenerian in nature, more willing to accept the international system as it exists, then we would not have to care whether Iran had nukes. We would not be happy about it, but it would be considerably less threatening.

Abesent some collapse of the regime, we are going to have to accept the eventual arrival of a nuclear balance of terror of a truly cosmic kind; relying on the sanity of embassy takers, Holocaust threateners and devoted supporters of every aggression against us short of declared war; or we will have to run our own undeclared and covert war against Iran, using terrorism, counterterrorism, smuggling, counterfitting and everything else we can think of; we're going to have to hope and/or encourage the Israelis to do our dirty work for us (they are probably marginally capable of it); or we are going to have to provoke them into doing something truly stupid. None of the alternatives are pleasant.

4/23/2008 07:37:00 PM  
Blogger El Jefe Maximo said...

I truly hate comment typos "abesent" sounds like what Abe Lincoln's momma called him

4/23/2008 07:39:00 PM  
Blogger Boghie said...

As much of the military leadership did in the era of the Clinton Legacy:

There will be mass retirements if/when Clinton or Obama assume the presidency.

Additionally, there will actually be early buyouts.

Why do you all think we only had 160,000 active duty Marines and 360,000 active duty Army on 2001/09/11?

We now have 25,000 more Marine and 145,000 more Army active duty personnel.

That growth will be cut in the next 'peace dividend'!

Leaving us only "Conjecture 2" as our only option when a population center is massively hit. President Clinton will 'obliterate' the foe because she neither deterred them nor fought them. President Obama will 'obliterate' the foe after a few hits because he has no punch left and they had the temerity to lie to him – a woman scorned.

4/23/2008 07:40:00 PM  
Blogger Boghie said...

el Jefe,

Designing, building, and implementing nuclear weapons is very expensive.

Iran now has to man their borders to the north, to the east, to the west, and to the south.

They are expending a huge amount of resources to remain the 'bad boy' of nations.

What happens when the oil prices plummet as a result of a world wide economic slowdown - just after they got used to spending their new found gold? Remember all the yakking about Japan in the early 1990s.

Iran will collapse from within - like North Korea. Patraeus will just help it along.

Yea!!!

I wonder if they could transfer him to the North Korea theater in the Grand War on Barbarians once these turds are subdued.

4/23/2008 07:48:00 PM  
Blogger Mətušélaḥ said...

This comment has been removed by the author.

4/24/2008 04:33:00 AM  
Blogger hdgreene said...

Boghie writes:

What happens when the oil prices plummet as a result of a world wide economic slowdown - just after they got used to spending their new found gold?

Unfortunately, Bogie, the Obama-Clinton team will keep the price of Oil up because the left Democrats will demand it -- along with the destruction of the American Oil Companies. They will become subsidiaries of Pemex and all will be wonderful. We will be in for a replay of the 70's. Even disco will come back as a kind of circus for the proletariat.

The Mullahs will alternate between intimidation and honeyed words but not attack us directly in the homeland (of course, our allies will not be so fortunate). Tehran will want to take over the Middle East and the Islamic world first. They will advance one step, pause; advance two, pause; advance three and step back one. There will be no risk of obliteration -- at least on their side. In fact, they will have taken over half the world before the New York Times notices and demands further concessions (from us, of course).

4/24/2008 04:56:00 AM  
Blogger Teresita said...

hdgreene: We will be in for a replay of the 70's. Even disco will come back as a kind of circus for the proletariat.

Disco never went away, it turned into what we now call "old school" in the mid-80s, then Detroit house music in the late 80s, then rave and techno in the early 90's, electronica after 1997, and finally trance today. We've got stagflation again though, and lots of veterans returning from an interminable land war in Asia with Post Traumatic Stress Disorder. We might even get a 55 MPH national speed limit again to conserve fuel.

4/24/2008 06:23:00 AM  
Blogger Buckets said...

Teresita on the evolution of modern dance music. Priceless!

4/24/2008 07:11:00 AM  
Blogger Asher Abrams said...

"abesent" = a Lincoln penny

4/24/2008 07:47:00 AM  
Blogger El Jefe Maximo said...

Teresita,

Return of the 70's would be somewhat okay, except for leisure suits and the speed limit.

55 mph speed limit ? Take away my gas pedal ? Not happening. What did Charlton Heston say about guns when he ran the NRA ?

I knew there was a reason I liked the 80's better.

4/24/2008 07:58:00 AM  
Blogger Teresita said...

El Jefe Maximo: 55 mph speed limit ? Take away my gas pedal ? Not happening.

When gas in the States gets to where it is in the Philippines now ($6.14 when you do all the unit conversions), we're back to double nickels, no matter who gets elected. It was Tricky Dicky who did it the first time.

4/24/2008 05:38:00 PM  
Blogger Marcus Aurelius said...

55? I don't think so.

When I am not in a hurry (e.g. going to work) I keep to the limit. Last summer I very carefully monitored my mileage and noticed a significant increase in mileage when driving 65/55 instead of 75/65 (using vent instead of air conditioning, laying off of the gas farther away from an upcoming stop etc), but people would blow by me.

4/24/2008 05:59:00 PM  

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