President Donald Trump had nothing but praise Sunday for U.S. Army Chief of Staff Gen. Mark Milley, his choice to replace retiring Gen. Joe Dunford as chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff. Trump, who formally announced Milley’s appointment in a Tweet on Dec. 8, said on the White House South Lawn that Milley is “a great gentleman, he’s a great patriot, he’s a great soldier.”
President Trump: "Mark Milley, he's a great gentleman, he's a great patriot, he's a great soldier." pic.twitter.com/BFUulSXQAb
— The Hill (@thehill) December 10, 2018
Dunford, a 41-year veteran, is the former Commandant of the Marine Corps, and assumed his current role in 2015. He is expected to serve out the rest of his term until fall 2019. Additionally, Air Force Gen. Paul Selva, vice chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, is expected to retire next summer.
#GenDunford congratulates @ArmyChiefStaff Gen. Mark Milley on his selection as the nominee to be the next Chairman of the Joint Chiefs. He has served with Gen. Milley in peacetime and in combat and has the highest regard for his leadership. https://t.co/exyQbBevhL
— The Joint Staff 🇺🇸 (@thejointstaff) December 8, 2018
The 60-year-old Milley, an Army Ranger and Green Beret with extensive command experience in Afghanistan and Iraq, has been the Army’s top-ranking officer for more than three years. He previously commanded U.S. Army Forces Command, III Corps, the 10th Mountain Division, the 5th Specials Forces Group and was the deputy commander of the 101st Airborne Division and military assistant to the secretary of Defense. His deployments include the Sinai Peninsula, Panama, Somalia, Colombia and Haiti.
The announcement comes after a number of other key personnel announcements at the White House over the weekend, including the departure of White House Chief of Staff John Kelly.
Congratulations to Milley streamed in from Princeton and U.S. military partners.
— Princeton University (@Princeton) December 8, 2018
— Canadian Forces in 🇺🇸 (@CAFinUS) December 8, 2018