Admiral Mullen to Visit Israel
Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff of the United States Military (CJCS), Admiral Michael G. Mullen, is expected to arrive in Israel today, where he will be hosted by the IDF Chief of the General Staff, Lieutenant General Benny Gantz. A festive dinner will be held in his honor tonight, along with senior IDF commanders from the General Staff.
This is the sixth time Admiral Mullen has visited Israel since he assumed his position as Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff in 2007. Admiral Mullen’s tenure as Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff ends in September 2011, when he will be replaced by General Martin E. Dempsey. It is likely that this will be Mullen’s last visit to the Jewish State while on active duty.
Israel’s military co-operation with the United States has remained strong due in part to Mullen’s contribution. According to an IDF statement, “Throughout his tenure, Admiral Mullen greatly contributed to strengthening the steadfast relations between the IDF and United States military, and developed strong personal ties with his Israeli colleagues.”
Mullen has met with Israeli military leaders numerous times over his tenure as CJCS, even attending former Chief of Staff Gabi Ashkenazi’s farewell ceremony. Today’s visit will be a chance for the IDF Chief of the General Staff and senior IDF commanders to bid Admiral Mullen farewell as well as convey their appreciation and respect.