Obama’s New Defense Secretary Looks Like a Yes-Man
There’s no requirement that the Defense Secretary have actual military experience, but the selection of Ashton “Ash” Carter as the nominee to replace Chuck Hagel says a lot about what President Barack Obama wants from his next Pentagon chief.
“In addition to a broad understanding of the Pentagon bureaucracy, Carter is seen as a master of managing large budgets, a premium in the present era of continued belt tightening on Capitol Hill, as well as an expert on weapons acquisitions,” reports CNN.
“He also has a firm grasp on understanding the trends and technology of warfare in the future.”
Previously, Carter served as Deputy Defense Secretary – the Pentagon’s number two position – under Hagel and Leon Panetta. He’s bounced between academia and government with great success. Carter is apparently respected by the top military brass and is expected not to generate much controversy from Republicans when formally announced.
Yet for all the operational strengths Carter brings to the table – which appear to be considerable and surely appreciated on a day-to-day basis – missing from CNN’s bio piece is any mention of whether Carter as SecDef will have strong principles to guide his recommendations to President Obama regarding military strategy or foreign policy.
And maybe that’s the point.
From the looks of it, Ash Carter is a hardworking, intelligent man who knows how to get things done within a hugely important bureaucracy. Missing from his portfolio, though, is any indicator that he will be much more than yes-man.
Then again, maybe that’s the point.