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Confirmation Test Looms for Gen. Charles Brown, Biden’s Nominee for Joint Chiefs



Gen. Charles “CQ” Brown, President Biden’s choice to lead the Joint Chiefs of Staff, will testify Tuesday morning before the Senate Armed Services Committee, where lawmakers are likely to press him on the administration’s support for Ukraine, challenges posed by Russia and China, and Pentagon social policies that have rankled Republicans and led to an unprecedented hold on military promotions.

If his nomination advances and he is confirmed by the full Senate, Brown would become the second African American to the hold the Pentagon’s top uniformed assignment. As part of a leadership team with Defense Secretary Lloyd Austin, Brown’s promotion would mark the first time that both jobs are held by Black men.

Brown, who has led the Air Force since 2020, would replace Gen. Mark A. Milley, a pugnacious and at times polarizing Army officer who frequently clashed his Biden’s predecessor as commander in chief, Donald Trump. By law, Milley must vacate the chairman’s post by the end of September.

Biden considers Brown a seasoned tactician who understands the strategic challenges facing the United States, administration officials have said. The president has praised him publicly as “a warrior” who knows “what it means to be in the thick of battle” and keep his cool.

Brown helped engineer and direct the air campaign credited with dislodging the Islamic State group from its self-declared caliphate in Syria and Iraq. Through assignments in the Pacific, administration officials said, he has developed a nuanced insight on China. And as a member of the Joint Staff, Brown has been involved in the expansive effort to arm, train and advise the Ukrainian military since Russia’s invasion last year.

As the Air Force’s top officer, Brown has advocated for modernizing the service’s fleet. He has also sought to


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