Wed, 04 Oct 2023

WASHINGTON D.C.: The White House announced this week that President Joe Biden has chosen US Air Force chief General Charles Q. Brown to become the new chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, subject to Senate approval.

If appointed, Brown, a former fighter pilot with experience in the Pacific, would be only the second Black officer to become chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, after General Colin Powell two decades ago, and will follow Biden's appointment of Lloyd Austin as the first Black US Secretary of Defense, the top civilian position at the Pentagon.

Brown would also take on the role at a time of rising tensions with China.

Biden was reported to have accepted Austin's recommendation to choose Brown for the position, as he was said to understand "the strategic challenges the US faces around the world."

Known as "CQ" by his colleagues, Brown's experiences include overseeing coalition air operations against Islamic State in the Middle East, as well as commanding the US Air Force in the Pacific from 2018 to 2020.

In an interview with Reuters, Heather Wilson, who was secretary of the Air Force at the time, lauded Brown's leadership style and experience in the Pacific.

"He is thoughtful, respected by his peers and subordinates, and will provide steady leadership and good advice for the country," she said.

However, its unclear how quickly Brown's appointment would be confirmed by the Senate.

Since February, Senator Tommy Tuberville has been blocking military nominations, as he believes the Pentagon is using funding to cover travel expenses for abortions for service members.

This week, the White House urged Tuberville to reconsider his position, stressing that he is threatening US national security.

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