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Marine Gen. James Mattis (left), commander of U.S. Central Command, and Navy Adm. William H. McRaven, commander of U.S. Special Operations Command, testify before the Senate Armed Services Committee on Tuesday. (Andrew Harnik/The Washington Times)

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US Middle East Threat_Live.jpg

**FILE** Marine Corps Gen. James Mattis testifies July 10, 2010, on Capitol Hill before the Senate Armed Services Committee. (Associated Press)

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Iraq Biden Visit_Lea.jpg

** FILE ** Vice President Joseph R. Biden (second from left) meets in Baghdad on Monday, Aug. 30, 2010, with (from left) Gen. Raymond T. Odierno, the outgoing U.S. commander in Iraq; U.S. Ambassador to Iraq James Jeffrey; Marine Gen. James Mattis, head of U.S. Central Command; and Lt. Gen. Lloyd Austin, the incoming commander of U.S. forces in Iraq. The change of command ceremony was held Wednesday. (AP Photo/Hadi Mizban)

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Marine Gen. James Mattis, named to head U.S. Central Command, arrives Tuesday on Capitol Hill to testify at a Senate Armed Services Committee hearing on his nomination. (Associated Press)

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U.S. Central Command Commander-nominee Marine Corps Gen. James Mattis, left, arrives on Capitol Hill in Washington, Tuesday, July 27, 2010, to testify before the Senate Armed Services Committee hearing on his nomination. (AP Photo/Alex Brandon)

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U.S. Central Command Commander-nominee Marine Corps Gen. James Mattis , right, is greeted on Capitol Hill in Washington, Tuesday, July 27, 2010, by Senate Armed Services Committee Sen. Carl Levin, D-Mich., prior to testifying before the committee's hearing on his nomination. (AP Photo/Alex Brandon)

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U.S. Central Command Commander-nominee Marine Corps Gen. James Mattis, center, smiles on Capitol Hill in Washington, Tuesday, July 27, 2010, prior to testifying before the Senate Armed Services Committee hearing on his nomination. (AP Photo/Alex Brandon)

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Senate Armed Services Committee Chairman Sen. Carl Levin, D-Mich., left and the committee's ranking Republican Sen. John McCain, R-Ariz., right, question Marine Corps Gen. James Mattis, center, on Capitol Hill in Washington, Tuesday, July 27, 2010, during the committee's hearing on Mattis' nomination to head the U.S. Central Command. (AP Photo/Alex Brandon)

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U.S. Central Command Commander-nominee Marine Corps Gen. James Mattis testifies on Capitol Hill in Washington, Tuesday, July 27, 2010, before the Senate Armed Services Committee hearing on his nomination. (AP Photo/Alex Brandon)

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U.S. Central Command Commander-nominee Marine Corps Gen. James Mattis arrives on Capitol Hill in Washington, Tuesday, July 27, 2010, to testify before the Senate Armed Services Committee hearing on his nomination. (AP Photo/Alex Brandon)