Daniel McDowell, associate professor of political science in the Maxwell School of Citizenship and Public Affairs, has published an essay exploring the implications of Chinese bank expansion abroad in the 2022-23 Wilson China Fellowship Report “Understanding China Amid Change and…
‘Lloyd Austin Can Lead—As a Civilian’
Sean O’Keefe, University Professor in the Maxwell School and the Howard G. and S. Louise Phanstiel Chair of Strategic Management and Leadership, wrote an op-ed for The Hill titled “Lloyd Austin can lead—as a civilian.” O’Keefe has served in a variety of capacities for the U.S. government, including under former Secretary of Defense Dick Cheney.
President-elect Joe Biden recently nominated Lloyd Austin as Secretary of Defense in his incoming administration. After years of working for the Department of Defense and an extensive career in public service, O’Keefe outlines what he sees as the three most important factors in nominating someone to the role.
O’Keefe writes that the Defense secretary “must have the complete trust and confidence of the president,” a tenet in which Austin clearly fulfills as he has a close and meaningful relationship with Biden. The Defense secretary must also understand the human consequences of military actions, and O’Keefe writes that Austin has seen the cost of war as the former CENTCOM Commander.
Lastly, the position requires someone who “must constantly behave with integrity and inspire confidence in those who serve in the uniformed military and who place themselves in harm’s way in defense of our country.” Austin fulfills this responsibility, says O’Keefe, as his nomination also serves as a historic inspiration to military members of color and our nation’s diverse talent.
Ultimately O’Keefe is confident that Austin will be the Defense leader the nation needs. “At a time when the Department of Defense faces strains and challenges among the toughest faced in generations, such qualities are essential. He is exactly the right person for the job,” writes O’Keefe.