Retiree is nominated for Army post

Retiree is nominated for Army post

The president has nominated retired Army Gen. Peter J. Schoomaker to be the next Army chief of staff.

If Schoomaker is confirmed by the Senate to succeed recently retired Gen. Eric Shinseki, it would mark the first time a former commander of the Special Operations Command at MacDill Air Force Base, Fla., has risen to the post. Schoomaker retired from active duty in December 2000.

Defense secretary Donald Rumsfeld sparked a wave of controversy by choosing Schoomaker earlier this month over active-duty generals in the Army to replace Shinseki, sources said. Rumsfeld also selected Air Force secretary James Roche to fill a vacancy left in late April when Army secretary Thomas White abruptly resigned.

Schoomaker would lead an Army that is in the midst of transformation. Last month, the Army entered the development and demonstration phase of its $14.9 billion Future Combat Systems program, a project to link advanced warfighting vehicles and sensors on a network.

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