The Washington Post

Senior Army official said to be in line for Saudi ambassadorship

Under Secretary of the Army Joseph W. Westphal (Photo by Jemal Countess/Getty Images for Microsoft) Under Secretary of the Army Joseph W. Westphal (Photo by Jemal Countess/Getty Images for Microsoft)

We’re hearing that Army Under Secretary Joseph W. Westphal, the second-highest ranking Army civilian, is the front-runner to be the next U.S. ambassador  to Saudi Arabia.

Westphal, a former chancellor of the University of Maine system,  served as acting secretary of the Army in 2001 and assistant secretary of the Army for Civil Works from 1998 to 2001.

Born in Santiago, Chile, Westphal also has congressional experience, having worked as an aide on the House budget committee, and having worked at the Environmental Protection Agency and the Department of Interior.

If nominated to the Riyadh post to replace retired Air Force brigadier general Jim Smith, Westphal would be involved in a key country that’s deeply embroiled in the Syrian civil war  — and whose loyalties on that front  have been questioned — as well as managing the complicated Saudi role during a potential thaw in U.S. relations with Iran.

Al Kamen, an award-winning columnist on the national staff of The Washington Post, created the “In the Loop” column in 1993.

The Freddie Gray case

Please provide a valid email address.

You’re all set!

Campaign 2016 Email Updates

Please provide a valid email address.

You’re all set!

Get Zika news by email

Please provide a valid email address.

You’re all set!
Comments
Show Comments
New Hampshire has voted. The Democrats debate on Thursday. Get caught up on the race.
The Post's Philip Rucker and Robert Costa say...
For Trump, the victory here was sweet vindication, showing that his atypical campaign could prevail largely on the power of celebrity and saturation media coverage. But there was also potential for concern in Tuesday's outcome. Trump faces doubts about his discipline as a candidate and whether he can build his support beyond the levels he has shown in the polls.
The Post's John Wagner and Anne Gearan say...
Hillary Clinton, who was declared the winner of the Iowa caucuses last week by the narrowest of margins, now finds herself struggling to right her once-formidable campaign against a self-described democratic socialist whom she has accused of selling pipe dreams to his supporters.
Quoted
People have every right to be angry. But they're also hungry for solutions.
Hillary Clinton, in her New Hampshire primary night speech
Quoted
I am going to be the greatest jobs president that God ever created.
Donald Trump, in his New Hampshire primary victory speech
Upcoming debates
Feb. 11: Democratic debate

on PBS, in Wisconsin

Feb 13: GOP debate

on CBS News, in South Carolina

Feb. 25: GOP debate

on CNN, in Houston, Texas

Campaign 2016
See results from N.H.

To keep reading, please enter your email address.

You’ll also receive from The Washington Post:
  • A free 6-week digital subscription
  • Our daily newsletter in your inbox

Please enter a valid email address

I have read and agree to the Terms of Service and Privacy Policy.

Please indicate agreement.

Thank you.

Check your inbox. We’ve sent an email explaining how to set up an account and activate your free digital subscription.