[Guest post by DRJ]
Defense Secretary Robert Gates has recommended Gen. James Amos, an aviator and the current second-in-command, as the next Marine Corp Commandant:
“Defense Secretary Robert Gates has recommended that Gen. James Amos will be the next commandant of the Marine Corps, POLITICO has learned.
Amos, already the Corps’ No. 2 officer, would be the first aviator to lead the service. The selection of Amos is a huge upset since the choice was thought to be between two known infantry officers: Dunford, and Gen. James Mattis. Both men had long been considered frontrunners and brought to the job different reputations and backgrounds at a time when the Corps endeavors to re-establish its sea-service identity after more than eight years of fighting wars in largely landlocked regions.”
There is concern at the Pentagon that a commander with experience in ground wars is needed while the U.S. is fighting two ground-based wars. What qualities vaulted the aviator Amos over the others? It may be because he has the right attitude on budgets and gays in the military:
“Typically, the Corps’ second officer, known as the assistant commandant of the Marine Corps, is an aviator who never rises to the top job. But the choice of Amos, considered a reserved senior officer not known for the force of his personality, may be the result of a combination of factors. Those likely include his thinking on how and if gays and lesbians should serve openly in the Marine Corps, as well as potentially being open to cancelling the EFV, a multibillion-dollar program that is behind schedule and over budget. Gates appears to have the vehicle in his budgetary cross-hairs.”
“Not known for the force of his personality”? I guess that’s why his nickname is Tamer Amos.