Washington-Pentagon spokesman John F. Kirby says the Pentagon’s noisy public face has moved to the White House in a new role as President Biden’s national security voice for the past year and a half. The White House announced Friday.
Kirby will work with the new White House Press Secretary. Karine Jean-Pierre, Started in her position on Monday, officials said. He is the coordinator of the National Security Council for Strategic Communication and reports directly to Mr. Biden’s National Security Advisor, Jake Sullivan.
“John understands the complexity of US foreign and defense policies and will be a good representative of the government on important national security issues,” Biden said in a statement on Friday. The White House said Kirby would coordinate efforts to “explain US policy and speak to senior executives on relevant matters, including when appropriate on the White House podium.”
Kirby is a veteran government spokesperson and has long been respected by the Pentagon. A retired Rear Admiral, he jumped from the Pentagon to the State Department in 2015 and worked closely with then Secretary of State John F. Kelly during Iran’s nuclear negotiations and during the last two years of the Obama administration.
More recently, Kirby worked closely with Secretary of Defense Lloyd J. Austin III to talk about the ongoing Russian war in Ukraine and the US response, and held several weekly briefings.
During the Obama administration, Kirby spent a year as a Pentagon spokesman under Secretary of Defense Chuck Hagel, and was also a Navy spokesman. He was commissioned to the Navy in 1986 and served for nearly 30 years. He retired in the rank of Major General of the Navy in 2015.
Former Army officers rarely play such a senior role in the White House’s communications team, but executives said Biden praised Kirby’s ability to explain US national security policy to the public. rice field.
“I am very grateful to President Biden for trusting me and for the great support and leadership of Secretary Austin over the last 18 months,” Kirby said in a statement. Said.