Concerning the question of whether Panetta is experienced enough to be a competent CIA director a Georgetown professor writes that:
I think he’ll do fine. … The director is not a line officer; he’s not running cases and doing detailed analyses. He has to rely on many people in organization at various levels below him who are doing that- he has to exert leadership, he’s not supposed to micromanage. Even someone coming up through the ranks is not going to be in a position to directly apply [his experience]; if it’s experience from years ago, it might even be out of date.
To me this makes sense. The idea that he would bring in outsiders and people who are not typical politicians was one of Obama’s larger campaign points during the primaries. This simply seems to fit with his pledge to assemble a cabinet of something more than yes men and women.
Link via Is Panetta Experienced Enough? – The Plank .