General Mark Milley, Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff

General Mark Milley

Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff

Mark Alexander Milley was born in June 1958 in Winchester, Massachusetts. He holds a B.A. in political science from Princeton University, and a Master of Arts degree in international relations from Columbia University. He also received an M.A. in international security and security studies from the U.S. Naval War College, and is a graduate of the MIT Center for International Studies.

Milley earned his commission as an Army officer through Princeton’s Army ROTC program, and spent most of his career in Infantry or Special Forces assignments. He has served as the commanding general of U.S. Forces Command at Fort Bragg, North Carolina, and for III Corps based at Fort Hood, Texas. Prior to that, he served as the commander of the 10th Mountain Division.

He has been involved in the U.S. invasion of Panama, Operation Uphold Democracy, Operation Joint Endeavor, several operations in Iraq, and also in Operation Enduring Freedom in Afghanistan.

A four-star general, Milley assumed his position as the Chief of Staff of the U.S. Army in August 2015. President Trump announced in December 2018 that Milley would serve as the next Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff. In July 2019, he was confirmed in the Senate by a near-unanimous vote. He was sworn in in September 2019.

In the News…

Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, General Mark Milley, has urged Russian President Vladimir Putin to choose a diplomatic path instead of an invasion of Ukraine. Military action would be “horrific” for the country and would result in “significant” casualties, he said. 

“Given the type of forces that are arrayed … if that was unleashed on Ukraine, it would be significant, very significant, and it would result in a significant amount of casualties,” the general said at a Pentagon press briefing. “You can imagine what that might look like in dense urban areas, along roads, and so on and so forth. It would be horrific. It would be terrible. And it’s not necessary. And we think a diplomatic outcome is the way to go here.” 

General Milley spoke of Ukraine’s geography, noting that when its “high water table” freezes, “it makes it for optimal conditions for cross-country tract and wheeled vehicle maneuver.” 

“There are many people and highly dense population centers throughout Ukraine. And if war were to break out on a scale and scope that is possible, the civilian population will suffer immensely,” he said. 

General Milley said that “if Russia chooses to invade Ukraine, it will not be cost-free, in terms of casualties, or other significant effects.” 


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