Saturday, November 29, 2008

And The List Grows

Obama has picked his National Security Advisor, retired General James L. Jones. According to the New York Times, Jones is considered a moderate and considers John McCain a good friend, while he has only met the President-Elect a handful of times. This appointment follows the appointment of Hilary Clinton to State and the announcement that Gates will be staying at the Pentagon. The NYT article brings up the point that Jones will most likely be serving as a mediator between the two with Gates being a hold-over from the current administration and Clinton being a vocal critic of this administration.

But as National Security Advisor, Jones will have the ear of the President more easily than Clinton will. The National Security Advisor works in the West Wing, while obviously Secretaries of State and Defense do not. This may create some tension between Clinton and Jones if they disagree on policy, which is very possible.

But Jones has an impressive history when it comes to foreign policy as he was supreme allied commander in Europe during the war in Bosnia and the American campaign in Kosovo. He lived in Paris for almost his entire childhood and is respected by both parties. And according to the NYT article, Jones had some success in some Israeli-Palestinian disputes, so he obviously can be effective and can lead people in the right direction.

Whether he can create a favorable relationship with a man he doesn't know very well to become one of Obama's top advisors is still to be seen. But hopefully, as Obama has little experience in foreign policy (as we all heard many times in the last election) he will be smart enough to listen to what Jones has to say.

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