Transition Watch: Obama opts for centrist national security team

President-elect Barack Obama has selected three experienced centrists to serve as his national security team in a period of continuing global conflict related to the war on terrorism, reports the Associated Press.

By choosing three centrists?Hillary Rodham Clinton, Robert Gates, and James L. Jones?Obama might be signaling an interest in a more measured path to ending American military involvement in Iraq than he described during the presidential campaign.

Obama's choices signal a more pragmatic, less ideological approach to asserting American leadership in the world. In announcing on Monday that Clinton is his choice for secretary of state and that Gates has agreed to remain as defense secretary?with Jones as national security adviser in the White House?Obama said he has intentionally surrounded himself with "strong personalities and strong opinions." And he made clear that when push comes to shove, he will be the one to make the tough calls.

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