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article imageBiden picks hawkish Kathleen Hicks for high Pentagon job

By Ken Hanly     Jan 1, 2021 in Politics
On Wednesday, President Elect Joe Biden's transition team announced that Kathleen Hicks had been nominated for the Deputy Secretary of Defense, the second highest position in the Pentagon.
Hicks is a hawk
Hicks was an administration official in the Obama administration. Her most recent employer is the Center for Strategic and International Studies (CSIS).. CSIS is a think tank funded funded by some of the top US weapon makers including Lockheed Martin, Boeing, and Northrop Grumman. Several governments including the US, UAE, Japan, and Taiwan also provide funding for CSIS.
Hicks has been writing articles and op-eds that call for more US involvement around the world. This August, she co-authored an article in The Hill that criticized President Trump's plan to cut troop numbers in Germany. Biden could call off the withdrawal. Hicks would have the highest ranking job at the Pentagon awarded to a woman.
Hick's potential boss also has arms industry connections
If confirmed by the US Senate, retired Army General Lloyd Austin will be the immediate superior of Hicks. Austin oversaw Obama's Middle East policy when he was head of the US Central Command from 2013 to 2016. He is currently on the board of the defense contractor Raytheon. Since he has not been out of the armed forces for seven years, he will require a waiver from the US Congress to take the job.
Colin Kahl
Another Obama era official Colin Kahl has been nominated for Undersecretary of Defense for Policy also a high-level position in the Pentagon. Kahl served as national security advisor from 2014 to 2017 to Joe Biden who was at the time Vice President.
Kahl worked previously for the Center for a New American Security, a hawkish think tank funded by the arms industry. Kahl's appointment may be positive for Iran policy as he has defended the 2015 nuclear deal the JCPOA which he had a role in negotiating.
Biden praised the nomination
of Hicks and Kahl: “These respected, accomplished civilian leaders will help lead the Department of Defense with integrity and resolve, safeguard the lives and interests of the American people, and ensure that we fulfill our most sacred obligation: to equip and protect those who serve our country, and to care for them and their families both during and after their service. Dr. Kath Hicks and Dr. Colin Kahl have the broad experience and crisis-tested judgment necessary to help tackle the litany of challenges we face today, and all those we may confront tomorrow.”
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