Ex-Joint Chiefs Chairman Shalikashvili Dead

He was first foreign-born person to hold the post
By Newser Editors and Wire Services
Posted Jul 23, 2011 4:40 PM CDT
John Shalikashvili, Former Joint Chiefs of Staff Chairman, Dead at 75
In this 1996 file picture, Chairman of the U.S. Joint Chiefs of Staff Gen. John Shalikashvili talks with reporters in northern Bosnia.   (AP Photo/Rick Bowmer)

Retired Army Gen. John Shalikashvili, the first foreign-born chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, who counseled President Bill Clinton on the use of troops in Bosnia and other trouble spots, has died at age 75. The native of Poland held the top military job at the Pentagon in the Clinton administration from 1993 to 1997, when the general retired from the Army. He spent his later years living in Fort Lewis, Washington state.

Clinton pointed out that "Gen. Shali" made the recommendations that sent US troops into harm's way in Haiti, Rwanda, Bosnia, the Persian Gulf, and a host of other world hotspots that had proliferated since the end of the Cold War. "He never minced words, he never postured or pulled punches, he never shied away from tough issues or tough calls, and most important, he never shied away from doing what he believed was the right thing," Clinton said. (More Joint Chiefs of Staff stories.)

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