Obama Names Shinseki as Veterans' Affairs Chief
President-Elect Barack Obama will name another cabinet nominee tomorrow: Retired General Eric Shinseki to head the Department of Veterans' Affairs.
Shinseki was a vocal critic of the Neocons in the Bush Administration and is Obama's first Asian-American cabinet nominee.
Juan Cole calls the appointment "ironic."
"If Rumsfeld, Wolfowitz and [former undersecretary for defense Douglas J.] Feith had listened to Shinseki, there wouldn't be as many wounded veterans to take care of," Cole said. "I think this is a way of saying, 'Here was a career officer who had valuable insights who was shunted aside by arrogant civilians, and we're not going to make the same kind of mistakes.' "
As for the agency itself,
If confirmed by the Senate, Shinseki would control one of the federal government's largest agencies, which administers health care and other benefits for the nation's active military and veterans, as well as their families and survivors. The 240,000-employee department is the government's second largest, behind the Defense Department.
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