"Since his first assignment with the Marine Corps' "Thundering Third" Battalion 36 years ago, General Joe Dunford - a proud son of Boston - has served the United States and its Marine Corps with honor and distinction. As Commander of the International Security Assistance Force in Afghanistan, President Obama and I have relied on Joe's extraordinary ability and judgment as America responsibly transitions out of our longest war. We will continue to count on Joe's distinguished leadership as he assumes his new role as 36th Commandant of the United States Marine Corps. The American people are grateful to Joe and his wife Ellyn for their continued service to our country.
As General John Campbell assumes command of ISAF - John's third tour of duty in Afghanistan - I want to thank him and his wife Anne for their service as well. John's leadership comes at a defining moment, as Afghanistan undertakes a historic political transition, and the United States and our coalition partners transition from combat to training and support for Afghan forces. President Obama and I have the highest confidence in John, and we look forward to working closely with him in the months ahead."