Interesting piece about where Gen. Petraeus now occupies in the Obama Administration. Not in the front row, apparently. And not that visible either. Given that Obama and Gates have hired his guy for Afghanistan (and the first major replacement of a US general since MacArthur), it would be silly to argue that Petraeus is irrelevant or out of the loop.
Instead, he seems to be playing a normal role, compared to his outsized, out-in-front situation when Bush was president.
To be clear, the job of Petraeus is to give the best military advice and then let the civilians decide. He clearly overstepped his role earlier, and we (ok, I) did not mind because the Bush decision-making process was so very dysfunctional. Now that we have a President who thinks a few steps ahead, a SecDef who is not blinded by his own arrogance, and a strong National Security Adviser, the military guys have to take their situation as a mixed change--less influence but less micromanagement. I think that is a deal they can buy into pretty easily.