Clearly, the most noteworthy thing about General Jim Jones, apparently Barack Obama’s choice to be National Security Adviser, is that for someone about to get such an important post very little is known about him. But due to some weird conventions of newspapering, Helene Cooper can’t make that the lede of her Jones profile. A daily newspaper reporter needs to file her stories when she needs to file them, and she needs to project understanding of the situation.
But the truth is that her reporting seems to have revealed essentially nothing about Jones’ view of the major issues of the day, nothing about Jones’ views of Robert Gates and Hillary Clinton, nothing about Jones’ conception of the role of National Security Adviser, and strikingly little about how Obama ever came to be in the position of considering Jones for such high-level post. And this is through no fault of hers. Nobody knows anything! He’s a career military guy who wasn’t known during that time for doing much “off the record” sharing of his views on policy issues — he followed orders, impressed people enough to keep getting promoted, and either kept his views to himself or else only shared them with people who are extremely tight-lipped.