Fallon Resigns

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March 11, 2008 3:24 p.m.

Admiral William Fallon is out as CENTCOM commander.

Fallon has resigned, according to Defense Secretary Robert Gates, in a press conference at the Pentagon:

According to a recent Esquire profile of Fallon, a piece which generated considerable controversy within the Pentagon:

[W]ell-placed observers now say that it will come as no surprise if Fallon is relieved of his command before his time is up next spring, maybe as early as this summer, in favor of a commander the White House considers to be more pliable.

Here is Fallon’s statement:

“Recent press reports suggesting a disconnect between my views and the President’s policy objectives have become a distraction at a critical time and hamper efforts in the CENTCOM region. And although I don’t believe there have ever been any differences about the objectives of our policy in the Central Command Area of Responsibility, the simple perception that there is makes it difficult for me to effectively serve America’s interests there,” said Fallon.

“I have therefore concluded that it would be best to step aside and allow the Secretary and our military leaders to move beyond this distraction…and focus on the achievement of our strategic objectives in the region. I have submitted my request to retire to the Secretary of Defense.”

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