- The Washington Times - Tuesday, April 13, 2010

WASHINGTON (AP) — The senior U.S. general in Iraq since 2008, Gen. Ray Odierno, will be succeeded by a leading Pentagon general at the end of the summer, military officials said Monday. His replacement is Lt. Gen. Lloyd Austin, the staff director for the Joint Chiefs of Staff, the officials said.

Military officials spoke about the change on the condition of anonymity because the announcement has not been made.

Pentagon press secretary Geoff Morrell said Defense Secretary Robert Gates has not yet made a recommendation to the White House for Gen. Odierno’s successor.

Gen. Odierno took over command in Iraq from Gen. David Petraeus. He has served in various senior Army positions in Iraq since 2006. Gen. Odierno is less well known, although he cuts an imposing figure at more than 6 feet tall, burly and bald.

He plans to remain in Iraq through the drawdown of U.S. combat forces by September. Gen. Odierno then takes over Joint Forces Command, which trains forces from all branches of the military to work together.

Gen. Odierno’s son, Lt. Anthony Odierno, lost an arm while leading a patrol in Iraq in 2004.

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