Dempsey Meets With Jordan’s Defense Chief, Moves on to Afghanistan
By John D. Banusiewicz
American Forces Press Service
KABUL, Afghanistan, April 22, 2012 Army Gen. Martin E. Dempsey, chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, met today with his counterpart in Jordan’s capital of Amman before flying here for the second leg of an overseas trip.
Army Gen. Martin E. Dempsey, left, chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, is greets his Jordanian counterpart Lt. Gen. Mashal al-Zaben at a military post near Amman, Jordan, Apr. 22, 2012. Dempsey is visiting Jordan to further military to military relationships and discuss regional security. DOD photo by D. Myles Cullen
(Click photo for screen-resolution image);high-resolution image available.
The chairman and Lt. Gen. Mashal al-Zaben, Jordan’s defense chief, discussed regional security issues.
“Jordan is one of our most important non-NATO allies, and they’ve been actively involved with us in Afghanistan,” Dempsey told American Forces Press Service during the flight to Kabul. The Jordanian military has contributed to the reconstruction, counterterrorism, special operations and medical efforts in Afghanistan, he noted.
“So they’ve really been very important partners in that,” the chairman said.
Jordan and the United States have an enduring partnership that includes exercises and exchanges, the chairman said, citing the upcoming Exercise Eager Lion 12 as an example. The exercise will bring together more than 8,000 participants from more than 15 countries over five continents. Its focus is to strengthen military-to-military relationships of participating partner nations through a joint, whole-of-government, multinational approach, Dempsey’s spokesman, Marine Corps Col. David Lapan, said yesterday in Amman.
Such exercises are a good fit with the new U.S. strategy, the chairman pointed out, helping to build partners on the basis of capabilities and common interests.
In his meeting with Zaben, Dempsey said, the two military leaders also discussed the Jordanian perspective on the situation in neighboring Syria.
Upon arriving in Amman yesterday, the chairman had a series of meetings with U.S. Embassy officials and took time to meet informally with service members stationed in Amman.