USAF leader likely nominee for NATO post

Feb. 21, 2013 at 1:20 PM

WASHINGTON, Feb. 21 (UPI) -- Gen. Philip M. Breedlove, commander of U.S. Air Force units in Europe and Africa, is the likely candidate to be NATO's top leader, alliance officials said.

Senior NATO officials who said Breedlove is the leading candidate spoke on condition of anonymity because President Obama hasn't made the announcement, The New York Times reported Thursday.

The NATO commander post opened last week after President Obama's previous nominee, Marine Corps Gen. John R. Allen, announced that he was retiring to focus on family health issues.

Breedlove currently is the Air Force's top officer for both the European Command and for the Africa Command.

He was commissioned into the Air Force in 1977 from the R.O.T.C. program at George Tech. His official biography indicates Breedlove has commanded a fighter squadron, an operations group and three fighter wings.

Before his current assignment, Breedlove was vice chief of staff of the Air Force.

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