Here’s one of the more curious details about yesterday’s surprise news that Steven Kappes was leaving the CIA.
Best as I can tell, the White House has not yet issued a statement about his retirement (at least not via the White House press list). Not even in a week when one of the key issues for which Kappes gets some credit, the elimination of loose nukes (in Kappes case, in connection with Libya), was much in the news. Obviously, Obama doesn’t have to nominate Kappes’ replacement and get it approved by the Senate, but wouldn’t you think the White House would have had a “thank you for all your service” comment prepared?
House Intelligence Committee Chair Silvestre Reyes’ statement mentioned Kappes’ departure, but not until he spent two paragraphs lauding Kappes’ replacement, first.
I want to extend my congratulations to Mike Morell for his selection to serve as the next Deputy Director of the Central Intelligence Agency. I have had the pleasure of knowing Mike and, for the past nine years I have worked with him on a broad range of subjects. He is an exemplary CIA officer.Throughout his 30-year career with the agency, Mike has served with distinction. Whether serving at the Director’s right hand, leading the agency’s team of analysts, or serving as the principal briefer to the President, Mike’s diligence and commitment to duty, and to his country, will serve him well as he assumes his new role.
I know the agency appreciates the job Steve Kappes has done for the nation during his tenure. I will miss Steve’s insight and candor, and I wish him all the best as he moves on to his post-agency career.
CIA Director Leon Panetta’s statement does take the traditional form–lauding the retiring officer first, before announcing his replacement. Read more