Breedlove to Assume Command of Eucom, NATO Command
By Donna Miles
American Forces Press Service
WASHINGTON, April 22, 2013 Air Force Gen. Philip M. Breedlove will assume responsibilities as commander of U.S. European Command and as NATO’s supreme allied commander for Europe during change-of-command ceremonies slated for mid-May, Eucom officials reported.
The Senate confirmed Breedlove’s nomination for the post that Navy Adm. James G. Stavridis has held since 2009 late April 18. His confirmation was among 548 during a particularly busy legislative day, Senate officials said.
Breedlove currently serves as commander of U.S. Air Forces in Europe, U.S. Air Forces Africa and Allied Air Command, and as director of the Joint Air Power Competence Center.
“I have known General Breedlove for many years and can tell you that his impressive credentials, professionalism, and dynamic leadership make him an ideal choice,” Stavridis said of the confirmation. “I can think of no better officer to lead the men and women of Allied Command Operations and U.S. European Command over the coming years.”
Breedlove said he feels honored by the trust and confidence placed in him and looks forward to serving with “our wonderful joint and coalition forces.”
“Cindy and I pledge our total commitment to contributing to the long and proud record of excellence associated with NATO and U.S. European Command,” he said.
Breedlove will assume his new post at a pivotal time for NATO’s International Security Assistance Force mission in Afghanistan. He told the Senate Armed Services Committee during his confirmation hearing that his top priority will be “getting the transition in Afghanistan right.”
One of his biggest challenges, he said, will be to manage the evolution of NATO’s post-2014 mission there.
Noting that NATO has changed with the times since its inception, Breedlove vowed to provide the leadership to keep it capable and relevant for current and future challenges.
He recognized the important choices to be made, particularly during sequestration and an era of declining budgets across the alliance.
Change-of-command ceremonies are expected take place next month at the Eucom headquarters in Stuttgart, Germany, and at the Supreme Headquarters Allied Powers Europe in Mons, Belgium.