Obama Wants Panetta for Pentagon, Petraeus at CIA

President Obama on Thursday is expected to nominate CIA Director Leon Panetta to be the next Defense Secretary and Army Gen. David Petraeus to fill Panetta’s post at the intelligence agency. Petraeus, the top US general in Afghanistan since last July, plans to retire and would enter the CIA as a civilian, according to a US defense official. The Senate must approve both nominations. Panetta, who’s been at the CIA’s helm since February 2009, would replace Robert Gates, who has led the Pentagon since December 2006 and would like to leave office by the end of June. Gates has previously announced his intent to step down this year. The President is also expected to nominate Marine Corps Lt. Gen. John Allen, to take over for Petraeus in Afghanistan. He’s currently US Central Command’s deputy commander. (AFPS report by Jim Garamone) (See also our initial coverage)