In today’s New York Post, Ralph Peters writes that the appointment of Fallon to succeed John Abizaid as head of Central Command “baffled many in the media.” It has also baffled many in the Pentagon. During his stint at Pacific Command, Fallon quickly became known for a soft and accommodating approach to China often at odds with the tougher approach advocated by many in the administration.
Peters thinks that moving an Admiral over to Central Command suggests a shift of focus to Iran, where naval assets will be more strategically critical than they have been in Iraq and Afghanistan. That would be good news. But the move could also signal a more conciliatory strategy towards Iran, which would be the opposite of good news.
Fallon doesn’t strike me as a particularly strong or deft “balance of power” strategic thinker. But the powers that decide these things clearly see him as somebody who will do things Robert Gates’s way. What that way is, exactly, is the thing we are all holding our breath to see.