Defense Secretary Robert Gates says he wants Marine Corps Gen. James Mattis to take over U.S. Central Command.
Mattis would replace Gen. David Petraeus, who is now in Afghanistan as the top U.S. and NATO military officer there.
Mattis is a blunt-talking seasoned war veteran best known for leading troops into the bloody battle of Fallujah in Iraq in 2004. He also is known for a 2005 speech in San Diego in which he said it was "fun to shoot some people."
He was later chastised by his superiors for the remark but not formally reprimmanded.
© Copyright 2016 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.