Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff Marine Corps Gen. Joe Dunford (center), then commander of the International Security Assistance Force in Afghanistan, and then Army Lt. Gen. Mark Milley (right), render honors during a change of command ceremony at Kabul International Airport, Afghanistan, May 2, 2013. Army photo/Staff Sgt. Daniel Wallace

Trump: Next Joint Chiefs Chairman Gen. Mark Milley Is ‘Great Patriot,’ ‘Great Soldier’

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.”

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.

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.

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Multimedia journalist James Cullum has reported for over a decade to newspapers, magazines and websites in the D.C. metro area. He excels at finding order in chaotic environments, from slave liberations in South Sudan to the halls of the power in Washington, D.C.

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