President Obama doubled down on the Army Monday, picking an Army general as chairman of the Joint Chiefs — after picking another one to run the CIA, and a third — a one-time low-level Army lawyer — to run the Pentagon. There may be lots of red, white and blue around the capital today, but it felt more like red, white and Army green. This Army surplus bodes for more of a low-tech military future, leavened with its traditional lack of hubris, at least compared to the other services.
Less than two months after becoming the top officer in the U.S. Army, Obama tapped General Martin Dempsey again to serve as the top officer in the U.S. military as chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff. This tells us, first of all, that Dempsey wasn’t Obama’s first choice: it’s disruptive to the nation’s biggest military service to gear up for a new boss, only to have him promoted outside the service several weeks later. But it’s also reassuring.