President Obama announced last week that James Jones is stepping down as national security advisor, to be replaced by Tom Donilon, Jones’ deputy. “Jim—like the Marine he has always been—has been a dedicated public servant and a friend to me,” said Obama during the White House briefing with Jones and Donilon. Jones, a retired Marine Corps general, had joined the Administration with the understanding that he would serve only about two years, said Obama. Jones said he has enjoyed the assignment “immensely” and thanked the President for the chance to serve. Defense Secretary Robert Gates said Jones’ presence in the Administration “has been instrumental to maintaining a steady course on the many vexing security issues we face across the globe.” (Obama remarks) (Gates statement)
Boeing’s receipt of the 10th lot contract award for the KC-46 Pegasus this week leaves just three lots left to complete the Air Force’s buy of the tanker, although a further buy of 75 additional aircraft as a “bridge” to the Next-Generation Aerial-refueling System (NGAS) seems increasingly likely.