Trump Nominates Army Chief Milley to Replace Joint Chiefs Chairman Dunford

Trump chooses new Joint Chiefs of Staff chairman, against Mattis wishes

Dunford, a former commandant of the Marine Corps, is expected to serve out his term as Joint Chiefs chairman, which ends next October 1.

Pentagon spokesman Lt. Col. Mike Andrews said, "We are aware of the President's nomination and share his confidence" in Milley to be the Joint Chiefs chairman.

Under the law, the chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff is the highest-ranking and senior-most military officer in the U.S. Armed Forces and is the principal military advisor to the president. While serving as head of U.S. Army Forces Command at Fort Bragg, North Carolina, Milley was assigned to review the case of former Army Sgt. Bowe Bergdahl, who abandoned his post in Afghanistan and was held captive by the Taliban for five years.

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He also served as deputy commanding general of USA forces in Afghanistan.

Trump, who often likes to build drama and suspense by teasing his decisions, tells reporters at the White House Friday that he's going to be making an announcement at Saturday's Army-Navy game in Philadelphia. "Date of transition to be determined".

A Princeton-educated Green Beret, Milley has served multiple combat tours in Panama, Iraq and Afghanistan during his 38-year career. He has served in numerous command and leadership position, including in Iraq and Afghanistan.

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He previously worked in the Canberra press gallery and recently finished a Masters of Journalism at Columbia University in NY . Analysts have speculated that the executive's arrest was linked to alleged violations of USA sanctions on Iran .

Milley was also involved in the launch of Army Futures Command which is tasked with helping modernize the service. Bergdahl was eventually found guilty, reduced in rank to private, dishonorably discharged and fined $10,000, but was spared any additional prison time. Trump re-nominated him in 2017 for a second term.

Some officials said privately that they expected Goldfein to be chosen because the Air Force was due to receive the chairmanship - two Marine generals, an Army general and a Navy admiral have served since the Air Force's last chairman left office in 2005.

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