When David Petraeus next comes to Washington, he won’t be speaking on Capitol Hill, the Christian Science Monitor reports. Pentagon officials have denied requests for more hearings with the Iraq commander because they’re not sure they’ll agree with his recommendations. Petraeus has been criticized for being too cautious about Iraq withdrawals, while Afghanistan needs more troops.
Petraeus’ position may change when he takes over US Central Command next month and is responsible for both conflicts. “Where you stand depends on where you sit,” says one vocal Petraeus detractor. But even if the commander does recommend big withdrawals, the Pentagon is anxious to avoid another round of political theater. “The Hill respects him,” says one retired officer, but “they also expect to use him.”