Senate approves four-star nominees
The Senate on Friday gave Marine Lt. Gen. James N. Mattis a fourth star and named him commander of the U.S. Joint Forces Command.
The confirmation was one of several high-profile posts reviewed by the Senate this week. Lawmakers also approved Adm. Gary Roughead as the new Chief of Naval Operations, Gen. Kevin Chilton as the head of U.S. Strategic Command, and Gen. William Ward as head of the new Africa Command.
Mattis, who currently serves as commander of the I Marine Expeditionary Force and U.S. Marine Forces Central Command, will replace Air Force Gen. Lance Smith, who announced his retirement this summer.
Roughead, the head of U.S. Fleet Forces Command, replaces Adm. Michael Mullen, tapped to be the new chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff earlier this summer.
Chilton, the current head of Air Force Space Command, takes the post previously held by Marine Gen. James E. Cartwright, who now serves as vice chairman of the Joint Chiefs.
Ward is the first person to lead the new African Command, which will begin operations Monday.