With four top Obama Pentagon nominees recently confirmed -- Deputy Defense Secretary William Lynn, under secretary of defense for policy Michèle Flournoy, Robert Hale as Pentagon comptroller, and Jeh Johnson as Pentagon general counsel -- there are still three more under secretaries (intelligence, acquisitions/technology/logistics, and personnel and readiness) and a host of assistant secretaries to be officially named. In total, the Defense Department has 49 presidential appointments that require Senate confirmation.
Sources tell The Cable that Ashton Carter is expected to be named soon as under secretary of defense for acquisitions, technology, and logistics. The position oversees the military technology the Pentagon buys, as well as missile defense. Carter, a Harvard Kennedy School professor and former assistant secretary of defense for international security policy, has worked closely with former Defense Secretary William Perry on acquisition reform, 21st century threats, and the North Korea nuclear problem. He declined to comment.
UPDATE: CSIS's director of Europe programs Julianne Smith is to take a senior Defense Department job dealing with Europe and NATO issues, a source says. Smith did not respond to a query.
John Hudson reports on national security and foreign policy from the Pentagon to Foggy Bottom, the White House to Embassy Row, for The Cable.