Martin Dempsey

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In the latest reshuffling of his national-security team, President Obama announced the appointment of Army General Martin Dempsey as the next Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff. Dempsey, the current Army chief of staff, has a diverse background: he holds a master's degree in English and commanded one of the largest divisions in U.S. Army history during the first year of the Iraq war. If he stays for the next four years (the typical tenure of the past few Chairmen), Dempsey will oversee the drawdown in Afghanistan and further budget cuts at the Pentagon, challenges that will require his intellect and diplomatic skills more than a cavalryman's swagger.