Top US generals shuffle: Vacancy will be filled in early 2019.
President Donald Trump is set to shuffle his top generals as he needs to tackle a number of huge foreign policy challenges over the coming months, a media report said. Behind the scenes, the White House and Pentagon are looking for a new slate of senior officers to fill several key jobs with several senior military figures set to retire, CNN said in its report on Sunday. Defence Secretary James Mattis is playing a central role in making recommendations for nominations that will have to be confirmed by the Senate.
But there were no information on the nominations yet. A key vacancy will be filled in early 2019, when the highly respected four-star Air Force Gen. Paul Selva, currently the vice chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff is scheduled to retire. As vice chairman, Selva holds significant responsibilities overseeing highly classified nuclear weapons procedures, as well as military oversight of billions of dollars in budgeting and new weapons acquisitions. Some defence officials believe Army four-star Gen. Vincent Brooks, who heads the US military command in South Korea, could be a leading candidate to replace Selva.
Brooks is scheduled for rotation out of South Korea in the coming weeks, but in a potentially crucial signal, his retirement has not been announced, CNN said. Trump also has to pick a new chairman of the joint chiefs, the top military adviser to the president later in 2019. The current Chairman, Gen. Joseph Dunford, is scheduled to complete his second two-year term late 2019.