Magazine article U.S. Department of Defense Speeches

Message from Secretary Ashton Carter to All Department of Defense Personnel

Magazine article U.S. Department of Defense Speeches

Message from Secretary Ashton Carter to All Department of Defense Personnel

Article excerpt

Message from Secretary Ashton Carter to all Department of Defense Personnel As Written by Secretary of Defense Ash Carter, Washington, D.C., Tuesday, February 17, 2015

To all Department of Defense personnel:

I am honored to become your Secretary of Defense. I am proud to lead men and women who devote their lives to the highest calling--the defense of our nation.

And I am grateful to follow in the footsteps of Secretary Hagel, one of our nation's most honorable and conscientious public servants.

We live in challenging times--times that demand leadership and focus. And starting today, I will be calling on each and every one of you to help carry out three top priorities.

Our first priority is helping the President make the best possible national security decisions for protecting our country--and then implementing those decisions with our department's long-admired excellence.

We confront a turbulent and dangerous world: continuing turmoil in the Middle East and North Africa, and the malignant and savage terrorism emanating from it; an ongoing conflict in Afghanistan; a reversion to archaic security thinking in parts of Europe; tensions in the Asia-Pacific; the proliferation of weapons of mass destruction; and intensifying threats in cyberspace.

In addressing these challenges, I have pledged to provide the President my most candid strategic advice. I will count on your experience and expertise as I formulate that advice. I will also ensure the President receives candid professional military advice.

But as we tackle the many threats to our national security, we must never lose sight of our nation's enduring strengths--or of the opportunities to make a brighter future and better world for our children. The United States remains the strongest and most resilient nation on earth. Because of you, we have the finest fighting force the world has ever known. We have friends and allies in every corner of the world, while our adversaries have few. We have long possessed the world's most dynamic and innovative economy. And our values, principles, and leadership continue to inspire hope and progress around the world.

Safeguarding America's security and global leadership will depend on another of my main priorities: ensuring the strength and health of you who make up the greatest fighting force the world has ever known--our soldiers, sailors, airmen, Marines, civilians, and contractors all around the world. …

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