Leadership Changes in Afghanistan

Secretary Robert Gates and Admiral Michael Mullen speak at a press conference (Illustrative)



Secretary Robert Gates

"After consultation with the chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff and the commander of Central Command, and with the approval of the president, I have asked for the resignation of General David McKiernan. He will remain in command of both ISAF and U.S. Forces Afghanistan until such time as a relief can be nominated and confirmed. 

I am today recommending to the president that Lieutenant General Stanley McChrystal be nominated to replace General McKiernan as commander U.S. Forces Afghanistan.   
I am also recommending that Lieutenant General David Rodriguez be assigned to the new position of deputy commander, U.S. Forces Afghanistan. I have advised the secretary general of NATO and the minister of defense of Afghanistan of these prospective changes. 
I made these decisions only after careful consideration of a great number of factors, including the advice of Admiral Mullen and General Petraeus. In the end, I believe my decisions are in the best interests of our national security and the success of our mission in Afghanistan. I urge the Senate to swiftly confirm Generals McChrystal and Rodriguez so they can begin their important work as soon as possible."


To read the full transcript, please view the Federal News Service transcript on the Department of Defense website.

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