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Rear. Adm. William H. McRaven on Monday took over as commander of the Stuttgart, Germany-based U.S. Special Operations Command Europe.

Rear. Adm. William H. McRaven on Monday took over as commander of the Stuttgart, Germany-based U.S. Special Operations Command Europe. (Charlie Coon / S&S)

STUTTGART, Germany — Rear. Adm. William H. McRaven, who helped write the book on fighting terrorism, on Monday became commander of the U.S. Special Operations Command Europe.

McRaven, most recently deputy commanding general of Joint Special Operations Command in Fort Bragg, N.C., succeeded Army Maj. Gen. Thomas R. Csrnko.

Csrnko, who took over at SOCEUR in August 2003, has been nominated to become commanding general of Army Special Forces Command (Airborne) in Fort Bragg.

As the SOCEUR commander, McRaven will have operational control over the Army’s 1st Battalion, 10th Special Forces Group, Naval Special Warfare Unit 2, and the Air Force’s 352nd Special Operations Group. Troops from each of the units participated in Monday’s event.

McRaven, who previously worked at the National Security Council under President Bush, helped write the National Security Strategy and National Strategy for Combating Terrorism. He is also the author of the 1995 book, “Spec Ops: Case Studies in Special Operations Warfare, Theory and Practice.”

McRaven became the 15th commander of SOCEUR, which was established in 1967, and the first from the Navy.

Marine Gen. James L. Jones Jr., commander of the Stuttgart-based U.S. European Command, presided over the 40-minute ceremony, which was held in Washington Square on Patch Barracks.

Troops under McRaven will plan and coordinate combat and noncombat special operations within EUCOM’s 91-nation area of responsibility, which includes Europe, Israel and most of Africa.

The special operations command has overseen training and support of the militaries of countries in northern Africa. The command also oversees the U.S. portion of special operations that are conducted by NATO, such as the security that was provided at the 2004 Summer Olympics in Athens.

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