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Obama Nominates New Commander for Afghanistan

U.S. Marine Corps photo by Lance Cpl. Dexter S. Saulisbury(WASHINGTON) -- Handling the war in Afghanistan is destined to become Marine Gen. Joseph Dunford's responsibility early next year.

The Obama administration on Wednesday nominated Dunford to replace Gen. John Allen as commander of U.S. and NATO forces in Afghanistan.  In turn, the White House wants Allen, who's been on the job in Afghanistan since July 2011, to become the next supreme allied commander in Europe.

Both promotions have to first be approved by the Senate.

President Obama said in a statement that Dunford “will lead our forces through key milestones in our effort that will allow us to bring the war to a close responsibly as Afghanistan takes full responsibility for its security.”

Dunford, who led a Marine regiment in the 2003 invasion of Iraq and later took a top spot in commanding troops there, will have his work cut out for him in Afghanistan as he'll primarily oversee the further transfer of security responsibilities to national forces while U.S. and coalition troops prepare to exit the country at some point in 2014.

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