Just across from the AP. The good news? A guy who’s done so much good in one theater of the war on terror now gets a crack at both. The bad news? Nothing against Ray Odierno, but Petraeus is so closely identified with the security gains in Iraq that one can’t help feel jittery about removing him from the equation. We’ll see.
I wonder what his alleged nemesis, Adm. Fallon, thinks about the choice of replacement. Gates is due to speak at 11; stand by for updates.
Update: How will the left greet the news? More happily than you might expect, albeit naturally not for the right reasons.
Update: Here’s a useful primer from WaPo about Odierno’s evolution from a commander known for bruising tactics in the early parts of the war to a more Petraeus-esque hearts-and-minds counterinsurgency leader of late. Abu Muqawama wondered when the article appeared how much of that evolution was imposed on him by Petraeus versus how much was his own adaptation. Soon we’ll know.
Update: Blackfive predicted it.
Update: MM’s watching the press conference and says Petraeus will remain in charge in Iraq until at least the end of the summer.
Update: Also on Odierno, see Fred and Kimberly Kagan’s piece arguing that he’s the unsung hero of the surge, tasked with translating Petraeus’s counterinsurgency philosophy into operational detail.