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Thumbs up from The National Review. Michael Ledeen writes:

In the very early days of the Bush administration, Karl Rove asked a Washington policy wonk what personnel changes he’d recommend to newly arrived George W. The wonk said “there is one matter of life and death: he must replace Tenet at CIA and put in one of his own people, someone he absolutely trusts.” Rove said “well, good luck with that one.” Obama knows better, and he’s putting Leon Panetta in Langley.

I always liked Panetta. He served in the Army and is openly proud of it. He seems to be a good lawyer (oxymoronic though it may seem). He’s a good manager. And he’s going to watch Obama’s back at a place that’s full of stilettos and a track record for attempted presidential assassination second to none. But Italians know all about political assassination; you may remember Julius Caesar. Or Aldo Moro. The self-proclaimed cognoscenti will deride his lack of “spycraft,” and he’s never worked in the intel bureaucracy or, for that matter, in foreign policy or national security. But he’s been chief of staff, which involved all that stuff.

I think it’s a smart move.


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