I thought Fred Kaplan's profile of Sec. Gates was very solid work and enjoyed reading it. Gates said some very reasonable stuff about when he might like to retire:
"I think that it would be a mistake to wait until January 2012," he said. It might be hard to find a good person to take the job so late, with just one year to go in the president's current term. And, he added, "This is not the kind of job you want to fill in the spring of an election year."
August in Washington, though, man: I'm already getting requests for comment on WHAT THIS ALL MEANS. What this means is that everyone needs to act like Fonzie and chill. (Especially you, Yolanda.) Sec. Gates is not resigning tomorrow, and there will be plenty of time between now and his departure to both assess his legacy and handicap his likely successors.