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Revolving door of generals takes Afghanistan command
Leadership post unstable at heart of war on terror
Gen. Petraeus remained in Kabul for a year to implement a complex strategy that had American troops working side by side with Afghans to take back the villages.
In a surprise move, as the presidential election moved closer, Mr. Obama installed Gen. Petraeus, a charismatic leader coveted by some Republicans as a candidate, into the lower-profile job of CIA director.
“I have no knowledge he had ever had any political goals,” Gen. Griffith said. “He would have denied he had any political goals. I’m not sure the Obama administration did not see it otherwise.”
If the NATO command thought this choice would bring a dose of stability, it was wrong again: The White House surprised Washington by saying that his command would be cut short by a move to Brussels as NATO’s supreme commander.
Gen. Allen, however, got caught up in the Petraeus scandal over an exchange of emails with a married Florida socialite, Jill Kelley, and he opted not to take the NATO job. Fox News reported that the White House pushed him into retirement.
‘Withdrawal strategy’ decision
Retired generals speculate that the Obama administration settled on Gen. Dunford because it believed it would have an easier time in pressing for further troop cuts in Afghanistan with him as the top commander.
“This is a ‘withdrawal strategy’ personnel decision,” he wrote.
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