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EUCOM officer to lead NATO special ops headquarters

STUTTGART, Germany — Air Force Maj. Gen. Marshall B. Webb, U.S. European Command’s top special operations officer, has been nominated for a third star and an assignment as commander of NATO’s special operations headquarters.

Webb, who has been in command of Special Operations Command Europe in Stuttgart for less than a year, has been selected to head NATO special operations efforts at a time of increased concern over security on the Continent in light of the crisis in Ukraine.

The Defense Department announced on Friday that Webb had been nominated for the rank of lieutenant general and the post at Supreme Headquarters Allied Powers Europe, Mons, Belgium.

NATO’s Special Operations Headquarters is fairly new, formed after the alliance’s 2006 Riga Summit with the goal of getting troops from different nations to operate more effectively in the field.

The headquarters has steadily grown, culminating in the opening in 2012 of a new $19 million facility where about 200 military officials from across the alliance plan NATO missions.

Webb, a 1984 graduate of the U.S. Air Force Academy, has been a fixture in the Air Force special operations community for a good portion of his career.

Previous assignments includ command of the 20th Special Operations Squadron, the 352nd Special Operations Group, the 1st Special Operations Wing and the 23rd Air Force.

Webb also has held staff assignments at Headquarters Air Force Special Operations Command, at the Joint Special Operations Command and in the Office of the Secretary of Defense.

As a command pilot, Webb has more than 3,700 flying hours, including 117 combat hours in Afghanistan, Iraq and Bosnia.

Webb’s replacement at EUCOM Special Operations Command Europe is yet to be announced.

vandiver.john@stripes.com

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