President Barack Obama will announce a shift his top military and intelligence leadership ranks with on Thursday, as the nearing retirement of Defense Secretary Robert Gates will prompt a move to replace him with CIA Director Leon Panetta and fill Panetta's position with well-regarded General David Petraeus, the top military official in Afghanistan.
Sources speaking on condition of anonymity say the changes are not final, according to the Associated Press.
Panetta has served for the past two years as CIA director, directed a public policy institute for about a decade before that, and served as a senior official on the Bill Clinton Administration in the 1990s.
In other changes, the report says Obama will announce that Lt. Gen. John Allen will replace Petraeus as Afghanistan commander and that Ryan Crocker, a long-time foreign service member in the Middle East, will be named U.S. ambassador in Afghanistan.
Allen currently serves as deputy commander of U.S. Central Command in Florida. Crocker would replace Ambassador Karl Eikenberry. Crocker is currently the Dean of Texas A&M University's George bush School of Government and Public Service.
Over the past 19 years, Crocker has served as Ambassador to Iraq, Pakistan, Syria, Kuwait and Lebanon.