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No Drama National Security

Reading over Obama's prepared remarks for the unveiling of his national security team, one thing pops out. Other than briefly noting that he's discussed the attacks on Mumbai with his new team and expressing solidarity with the Indian people, Obama didn't mention India or Pakistan as a national security priority. Discussing Bob Gates, he of course talked about Iraq and Afghanistan, but I thought it was interesting that, in describing Hillary's responsibilities as Secretary of State, he said:

There is much to do -- from preventing the spread of nuclear weapons to Iran and North Korea, to seeking a lasting peace between Israel and the Palestinians, to strengthening international institutions .

I thought he might have made some mention of Hillary playing a role in monitory and defusing tensions on the subcontinent, but no. I'm not saying this is a bad thing. I'm sure the question of India and Pakistan will be at the top of Obama's agenda; and, obviously, the issues of Afghanistan and the spread of nuclear weapons to Iran and North Korea--which he did mention--do involve Pakistan. But you have to imagine that another president-elect would have used his first big national security press conference to jump all over the national security issue currently getting the most headlines.

It actually reminds me a bit of the campaign, when McCain tried to make hay out of the Russia-Georgia conflict ("We're all Georgians now") and Obama was content to be far more circumspect. It looks like Obama's going to carry that "no drama" approach into government.

--Jason Zengerle