LLoyd Austin

Explainer

SecDef Lloyd Austin travels to defend America at home and abroad

By Jimmie Johnson

SecDef Lloyd Austin has been traveling since taking office, meeting world leaders. What’s his plan to protect America at home and abroad?

Jimmie Johnson: HE’S A MILITARY GIANT AND WE’RE NOT JUST TALKING ABOUT HIS IMPRESSIVE STATURE.

HE’S SECRETARY OF DEFENSE LLOYD AUSTIN…THE ONE NAME YOU NEED TO KNOW TODAY.

SINCE BEING APPOINTED BY PRESIDENT JOE BIDEN, HE’S BEEN JET-SETTING ACROSS THE WORLD.

TAKE A LOOK AT THIS ITINERARY. FROM THE MIDDLE EAST TO EUROPE.

IN MARCH, THIS HIGHLY DECORATED FOUR-STAR GENERAL MADE A SECRET VISIT TO AFGHANISTAN AHEAD OF BIDEN’S ANNOUNCEMENT TO BRING ALL TROOPS HOME BY SEPTEMBER ELEVENTH. THAT WAS SECRETARY AUSTIN’S FIRST HIGH-PROFILE TRIP AS HEAD OF THE PENTAGON.

THEN, JUST A FEW WEEKS LATER, IN ISRAEL, HE SHARED AMERICA’S COMMITMENT TO ENSURING ISRAEL’S STABILITY AND SECURITY IN THE MIDDLE EAST.

LLOYD AUSTIN: That is why I thought it is important that we meet face to face, and to express our earnest desire for close consultations with Israel as we address sheer challenges in the region.

JOHNSON: IN BRITAIN, LEADERS DISCUSSED THE U.S. AND UK’S ROLE IN ENDING THE WAR OF AFGHANISTAN RESPONSIBLY AND OTHER PRIORITIES IN THE REGION.

IN GERMANY, SECRETARY AUSTIN ANNOUNCED THE INCREASE OF 500 U.S. SOLDIERS STATIONED IN THE COUNTRY TO STRENGTHEN THEIR NATO PARTNERSHIP.

AND, IN BELGIUM, AT NATO HEADQUARTERS, THE SECRETARY REASSURED AMERICA’S COMMITMENT TO THE ALLIANCE.

WHILE EACH PART OF THE WORLD POSES UNIQUE CHALLENGES, SECRETARY AUSTIN OUTLINED SOME OF HIS OVERARCHING GOALS IN THIS D-O-D MEMO…

DEFEATING COVID-19,  MAINTANING OUR COMPETITIVE ADVANTAGE WHEN IT COMES TO CHINA, MITIGATING THREATS FROM RUSSIA, IRAN, AND NORTH KOREA, AND EVEN ADDRESSING CLIMATE CHANGE BY REDUCING THE MILITARY’S CARBON FOOTPRINT.

HE ALSO HAS BIG RESPONSIBILITIES HERE AT HOME SUCH AS HOLDING ACTIVE SERVICE MEMBERS AND LEADERS ACCOUNTABLE FOR SEXUAL MISCONDUCT AND THWARTING THE THREAT OF EXTREMISTS IN THE MILITARY.

AUSTIN IS AMERICA’S FIRST BLACK SECRETARY OR DEFENSE.

LLOYD AUSTIN: My goal is not the be the last.

HIS ASCENT TO THE TOP OF THE DOD, A LONG WAY FROM HIS HUMBLE START. BORN IN MOBILE, ALABAMA, EDUCATED AT THE U.S. MILITARY ACADEMY.

HE PREVIOUSLY SERVED AS COMMANDER OF U-S CENTRAL COMMAND, OVERSEEING U.S. OPERATIONS IN THE MIDDLE EAST.

HE LED COALITION EFFORTS TO BATTLE ISIS IN IRAQ AND SYRIA.

NOW, HE’S THE TOP GUY, DEFENDING OUR COUNTRY FROM NEAR AND FAR.

LLOYD AUSTIN, SECRETARY OF DEFENSE.

JUST ONE NAME YOU NEED TO KNOW TODAY!

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