Foreign Policy Research Institute A Nation Must Think Before it Acts Beyond the Tenth Year: The Afghan National Security Force

Beyond the Tenth Year: The Afghan National Security Force

  • September 13, 2011
William B. Caldwell

Lieutenant General, U.S. Army

Commander of NATO Training Mission-Afghanistan

As commander of NATO Training Mission-Afghanistan, LTG Caldwell will provide an update on the Afghan military and police. He will consider the evolution of Afghan forces during his nearly two years in Kabul and highlight future challenges for creating an enduring force.

Lieutenant General William Caldwell assumed command of the NATO Training Mission-Afghanistan and Combined Security Transition Command-Afghanistan in Nov 2009 after serving as the Commander for the U.S. Army Combined Arms Center and Fort Leavenworth for 28 months, during which time he led the transformation of U.S. Army doctrine through the development of the Operations, Stability Operations, and Security Force Assistance Manuals. Prior to that assignment LTG Caldwell was the face of Multi-National Force-Iraq during Operation Iraqi Freedom as the spokesman and Deputy Chief of Staff for Strategic Effects. Before this, he led the 82nd Airborne Division for 25 months, spearheading civil support operations and humanitarian relief following Hurricanes Katrina and Rita. Commanding the 82nd Airborne Division followed service as the Deputy Director for Operations for the United States Pacific Command; and the Assistant Division Commander, 25th Infantry Division. He was commissioned in the Infantry upon graduation from the United States Military Academy at West Point.

He has held leadership positions in airborne and mechanized infantry units in the United States, the Middle East, the Balkans, and the Caribbean, including command of a battalion in the 25th Infantry Division and a brigade in the 10th Mountain Division. In addition, he has held staff assignments: Senior Military Assistant to the Deputy Secretary of Defense; Executive Assistant to the Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff; White House Fellow, The White House; Politico-Military Officer in Haiti during Operation Restore/Uphold Democracy; Brigade Operations Officer, 3rd Brigade, 82nd Airborne Division during Operations Desert Shield and Desert Storm; Chief of Plans for the 82nd Airborne Division during Operation Just Cause in Panama.

He has earned numerous awards, including the NATO Meritorious Service Medal, two awards of the Distinguished Service Medal, three awards of the Defense Superior Service Medal, three awards of the Legion of Merit, two awards of the Bronze Star, and the Louisiana Cross of Merit.

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