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Next Vice Chairman of Joint Chiefs Turns Over Reins in Norfolk

By Jennifer Colaizzi and Jim Garamone
American Forces Press Service

WASHINGTON, Aug. 2, 2005 – The next vice chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff turned over the reins of U.S. Joint Forces Command during an Aug. 1 ceremony aboard the USS Theodore Roosevelt in Norfolk, Va.

Adm. Edmund Giambastiani will succeed Marine Gen. Peter Pace as vice chairman later this summer. Pace will take over as the new chairman Oct. 1.

Giambastiani turned over command of JFCOM to Army Lt. Gen. Robert W. Wagner, who had been his deputy commander, during the ceremony on the Roosevelt's hangar deck. The admiral also stepped down as NATO's supreme allied commander for transformation. The Royal Navy's Adm. Sir Mark Stanhope will act in that capacity until NATO confirms a replacement.

Current Joint Chiefs chairman Air Force Gen. Richard B. Myers spoke at the ceremony. He praised the men and women of Joint Forces Command and NATO's transformation command. "You have done an absolutely outstanding job meeting the challenges of transforming U.S. and NATO forces," Myers said.

The chairman praised Giambastiani, saying he brought an intellectual rigor to the command that has pushed U.S. and NATO transformation. "We cannot protect ourselves today and tomorrow with yesterday's forces or yesterday's ideas," Myers said.

Joint Forces Command has pushed joint training and education for the American military. It also has helped nail down the requirements for joint task forces and exercised concepts that are now being used by forces in the field. Myers said Giambastiani "took on the role of global force provider, ensuring our combatant commanders had the forces they needed for worldwide operations."

Myers called NATO's transformation command "the change agent" for NATO forces. The command - formed after NATO's Prague Summit in 2002 - helps various national forces transform even as the alliance is engaged in Kosovo, Afghanistan, Iraq and Sudan.

The general said the command is integral in forging and maintaining international partnerships so vital in defeating the threat facing the world today.

Ambassador Ed Kronenburg, director of the private office of the NATO secretary-general, said Giambastiani has been instrumental in pushing the command forward and has made lasting contributions. Kronenburg said under Giambastiani, NATO's transformation command stood up three new major commands: the Joint Warfare Center in Stavanger, Norway; the Joint Force Training Center in Bydgoszcz, Poland; and the Joint Analysis and Lessons Learned Center in Monsanto, Portugal.

The command also has forged partnerships with industry, academia, and research institutions in Europe and North America. Kronenburg said the admiral also has played a key role in the development of the NATO Response Force.

Giambastiani spoke of the need for all instruments of national power and all nations to unite against the threat of violent extremism. "We can no longer rely simply on overwhelming force to protect us from the realities we face in today's struggle against extremism," he said. "We must rely on the overmatching power of all of our instruments of national and alliance power - not just military power, but also the diplomatic, informational, and economic instruments of power as well."

Transformation of the military and processes that encourage new national and international cooperation is key to defeating the threat, he said.

Contact Author

Gen. Richard B. Myers, USAF
Gen. Peter Pace, USMC
Adm. Edmund Giambastiani, USN
Lt. Gen. Robert W. Wagner, USA

Related Sites:
U.S. Joint Forces Command

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