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President Joe Biden will pick Gen Charles “CQ” Brown Jr to be the next chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, the top military officer in the US.

Gen Brown, currently the Air Force chief of staff, would replace Gen Mark Milley whose term expires in September.

The chairman is the president’s top military adviser.

If confirmed, Gen Brown would be the only other black chairman of the joint chiefs in US history besides General Colin Powell, who served from 1989-93. Since Defence Secretary Lloyd Austin is also black, it would be the first time ever that two African American men simultaneously held the most senior civil and military positions at the Pentagon.

Biden is set to make the announcement during a ceremony in the Rose Garden of the White House on Thursday.

As Air Force chief of staff, Gen Brown oversees the training and equipping of nearly 700,000 military personnel both in the US and abroad. Before becoming the first black person to serve in his current role when he was picked in June 2020, he was commander of Pacific Air Forces for the US Indo-Pacific command.

He started his military service as a command pilot, logging 3,000-plus flying hours and 130 combat hours.

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