Tiger on Top: General Mark Milley

Gen. Mark A. Milley, Chief of Staff of the Army, poses for a command portrait in the Army portrait studio at the Pentagon in Washington, D.C., August 12, 2015. (U.S. Army photo by Monica King/Released)

The new chief of staff of the United States Army, General Mark Milley, graduated from Princeton University in 1980. Nicknamed “Milldog” as an ice hockey player, he majored in political science and did ROTC, The four-star general’s father, a Marine, fought at Iwo Jima, according to the Daily Princetonian.

Milley credits Princeton with teaching critical thinking: “a way to frame problems, be skeptical in an intellectual sense of answers and issues and problems you’re facing. It’s almost a worldview or mindset more than a specific instance. You’d be surprised how many people don’t do it.”

“If I needed help with anything … he would stop what he’s doing, assist and help out,” said a friend quoted for the Daily Princetonian article. “He’s just a great friend. He’s the guy you want in the foxhole with you,”

Milley will serve on the Joint Chiefs of Staff, soon to be headed by a general from the Marine Corps, Joseph Dunford, a Georgetown University alumnus. Dunford has been nominated by Ash Carter to replace General Martin Dempsey, a West Point graduate who finishes his three-year term.

After 20 years Milley could have begun collecting his pension, but as he told the Daily Princetonian reporter, “After 9/11, I decided that I wasn’t going to get out until I was told to get out, You know you were participating in a historic time. As a professional soldier, there’s no way you’re going to turn your back and retire.”

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