The nomination of Gen. David Petraeus to be the new head of the Central Command not only ensures that he will be available to defend the George W. Bush administration's policies toward Iran and Iraq at least through the end of Bush's term and possibly even beyond.
It also gives Vice President Dick Cheney greater freedom of action to exploit the option of an air attack against Iran during the administration's final months.
The madman has the keys. Oh fucking swell. It's been in the works for a while:
But Petraeus had already effectively taken over many of the powers of the CENTCOM commander last year.
As the top commander in Iraq, Petraeus was in theory beneath Fallon in the chain of command. But in reality Petraeus ignored Fallon's views and took orders directly from the White House. Petraeus was in effect playing the role of CENTCOM commander in regard to the twin issues of Iraq and Iran.
It had become increasingly evident to Fallon that he was not really running things at CENTCOM, according to the source. Fallon's frustration about Petraeus' de facto power over Middle East policy was the main reason he was ready to step down.
Fallon's resignation announcement on Mar. 11 was followed less than a week later by a 10-day Cheney trip to the Middle East in which the vice president talked explicitly about the military option against Iran during visits to Turkey and Saudi Arabia. That suggested that Cheney felt freer to wield the military threat to Iran with Fallon neutralised.
A thousand-foot-long aircraft carrier loaded with nukes, conventional high explosives, a nuclear powerplant, hundreds of thousands of gallons of jet fuel, and 6000 sailors can indeed be sunk by enemy action. If Iran picks the right spot, and it just might, a carrier will plug the Straits of Hormuz like a cork in a bottle.
Get ready for a hell of a lot of coffins full of sailors and $10 a gallon gas if Cheney and Petraeus manage to pull it off in their remaining nine months, and they're trying to.