Veterans Support Panetta for DOD, Petraeus for CIA, Crocker for Ambassador to Afghanistan

 ·, Press Release   ·   Link to Article

Washington - The largest group of progressive veterans in America,, is voicing support for President Obama's selections to fill jobs as heads of the Department of Defense and CIA, as well as his pick to be the new Ambassador to Afghanistan.

In a statement, Iraq War Veteran and Interim Chairman of, Ashwin Madia said:

"We're generally pleased with the pick of Leon Panetta to head the Department of Defense, General Petraeus to head the CIA, and Ryan Crocker to be Ambassador to Afghanistan.

By installing General Petraeus at CIA, in particular, the administration may be signaling a willingness to use more covert operations, with a small footprint, to counter terrorism around the world.  That would lessen the burden on our military, and take us out of the nation-building business.  Further, having lead the campaigns in Iraq and Afghanistan, General Petraeus knows very well how the CIA fits into military operations.

Leon Panetta, before becoming CIA director voiced very strong opposition to torture, and recognized the harm it has on our military.  While he did halt investigations of past torture as CIA Director, we believe he continues to strive to wipe away torture as an anti-terror tactic, and will be vigilant in preventing it as the head of the Department of Defense.

Finally, we cannot and should not forget the appointment of Ryan Crocker to be the new ambassador to Afghanistan.  We continue to believe that Afghanistan's instability is an internal political problem of theirs - and should not be seen as something that our military might can solve.  Just as Iraq only became stable after the Sunni awakening, and political parties came together, Afghanistan will only ever become stable when a similar political and diplomatic effort takes place.  Ambassador Crocker is well aware of that.  His efforts in Afghanistan will be crucial towards getting our military out.

Each of these men will and should face tough questioning in front of the United States Senate, which will give us a better idea of their ideas, plans, and goals in their new roles.  However, there is no reason to think that they are not up to the challenge, and are pleased that the President has chosen each of them to take on these critical roles."

Founded in 2006,  and backed by over 100,000 members, the mission of is to use public issue campaigns and direct outreach to lawmakers to ensure that troops abroad have what they need to complete their missions, and receive the care they deserve when they get home. also recognizes veterans as a vital part of the fabric of our country and will work to protect veterans' interests in their day-to-day lives. is committed to the destruction of terror networks around the world - with force when necessary - to protect America.  While non-partisan, the group is the largest progressive organization of veterans in America.


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