James Forsyth

A gulf in opinion

A gulf in opinion
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A profile of Admiral William Fallon, the head of US Central Command, in Esquire is bound to make waves as it claims that,

“well-placed observers now say that it will come as no surprise if Fallon is relieved of his command before his time is up next spring, maybe as early as this summer, in favor of a commander the White House considers to be more pliable. If that were to happen, it may well mean that the president and vice-president intend to take military action against Iran before the end of this year and don't want a commander standing in their way.”

The whole piece is slightly breathless and has Fallon as the one good man standing between the neo-cons and their crazy plans. It also rather glosses over what many consider the most likely cause of Fallon’s removal, the split between him and General Petraeus—and the White House—over Iraq.

Fallon opposed the surge and still favours a rapid draw down of US troops. His position is that the commitment in Iraq limits US options elsewhere in the region which is true but ignores the dire consequences of squandering the advances made in Iraq since the surge started. Thankfully, the Pentagon appears to be siding with Petraeus.

Written byJames Forsyth

James Forsyth is Political Editor of the Spectator. He is also a columnist in The Sun.

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