The North Atlantic Council, NATO’s principal decision-making body, approved the nomination of General Curtis M. Scaparrotti of the United States Army as the next Supreme Allied Commander in Europe (SACEUR), as stated in a NATO press release.
“Upon completion of national confirmation processes, he will take up his appointment as successor to General Philip M. Breedlove, United States Air Force, at a change of command ceremony at the Supreme Headquarters Allied Powers Europe in Mons, Belgium, expected in the spring of 2016,” the press release stated.
General Scaparrotti is currently stationed in Korea. As a career infantry officer, Scaparrotti served as a commander in the International Security Assistance Force Joint Command in Afghanistan, and was also deputy commander of US forces in that country. He also commanded forces during operations in Iraq, the Congo, Rwanda, Bosnia, and Liberia.
Scaparrotti will replace US Air Force General Philip M. Breedlove, who became SACEUR in May of 2013 during a particularly challenging period in the Alliance’s history due to Russian aggression in eastern Ukraine following the annexation of the Crimea in March of 2014.
NATO, and specifically the US, have been criticized for what many believe to be a weak response to Russia’s incursion into eastern Europe.
Breedlove congratulated Scaparrotti via Twitter on Friday, calling him "a superb match for today's security situation."