Wednesday, October 05, 2011

Dempsey replaces Mullen as CJCS

Admiral Michael Glenn "Mike" Mullen, retired from the United States Navy at Joint Base Myer-Henderson Hall, Va. on Friday Sept. 30. He passed the reigns as Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff to Army General Martin E. Dempsey during a change of responsibility ceremony there before an audience that included President Obama, Vice President Biden, Secretary of Defense Panetta, senior military officers and other distinguished officials.

Gen. Dempsey [L] and SECDEF Panetta [R]

In his final speech as Chairman, Adm. Mullen said he reminded Gen. Dempsey that he will not only be the POTUS' advisor, but also the representative of 2.2 million members of the armed forces. He said that his successor's biggest challenge will be in Afghanistan "making sure that the security gains we have made are not squandered by the scourge of corruption or the lack of good governance."

“Time is both his best friend and his worst enemy. I never seemed to have enough of it to do the things I wanted, and it’s hard to believe it’s over,” Mullen said as he finished a 43 year career.

Gen. Dempsey was sworn in at the 18th Chairman and he thanked his predecessor for his patriotism and friendship. He vowed to maintain and strengthen the military during his term in office. In his speech, Dempsey said U.S. armed forces “are powerful, responsive, resilient, versatile and admired. [They] provide leaders with a wide range of options to counter threats and crises. And when sent to do the nation's bidding, we are an unambiguous signal of our nation’s resolve.”

Adm. Mullen [L] shakes the hand of his sucessor
“Our people -- America’s sons and daughters -- are our decisive edge ... We’ll change and we’ll be challenged, but when I complete my tenure as the chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, I intend to be able to say exactly the same thing: We will be the joint force the nation needs us to be, so help me, God.”

"I am supremely confident of the future because we have the strongest military force in our history and in the history of the world," SECDEF Panetta said. "And it is strong exactly because we can replace one great warrior with another."

On Monday, General Dempsey briefly spoke with reporters in his office at The Pentagon. While the session was considered off the record, Dempsey's staff allowed some details about the general's office to be revealed: He sits behind a 4 by 6 foot desk, the same one Gen. Douglas MacArthur used in the Philippines during World War II. He said his desk at home is one used by Gen. Omar Bradley, the first chairman. A larger than life painting of Gen. George C. Marshall hangs in the office in such a way that the chairman can see it clearly from his desk. On the desk however is something uniquely Dempsey's: a box that holds cards he had made when he commanded 1st Armored Division during its '03-'04 deployment to Iraq. The cards each bear the photo, personal and family information for a division solider killed in action there.

Credits: Jim Garamone & Karen Parrish, American Forces Press Service


Former Grunt said...

I looked at the top photo twice before and I only noticed you were standind behind the SecDef now. Kudos for not making it all about you, Colonel.

Constance said...

Dude, now everyone is going to notice!