A Marine general who fought in Fallujah, Iraq, and later oversaw ground forces in southwestern Afghanistan has been named to lead the Camp Pendleton-based 1st Marine Expeditionary Force.
Berger succeeds Lt. Gen. John Toolan Jr., who was named earlier this month to take over command of all Pacific forces.
Secretary of Defense Chuck Hagel announced the Berger move Wednesday.
The Twentynine Palms base carried his biography.“Berger was commissioned as an infantry officer in 1981 following graduation from Tulane University,” the profile said. “As a lieutenant and captain, he served as platoon commander in 1st Marine Division, and later as company commander and battalion operations officer in 2nd Reconnaissance Battalion during Operation Desert Storm.”
Earlier, Berger taught at Marine Aviation Weapons and Tactics Squadron One in Yuma and at III MEF Special Operations Training Group. He served on the Joint Chiefs of Staff as a policy planner in the Strategic Plans and Policy Directorate.
Berger commanded 3dr Battalion, 8th Marines from 2002 to 2004, deploying the battalion first to Okinawa, and later to Haiti in support of Operation Secure Tomorrow. As a colonel, Berger commanded Regimental Combat Team 8 in Fallujah, Iraq, during Operation Iraqi Freedom.
The profile also notes:
While serving as Assistant Division Commander of 2d Marine Division, he was appointed to the rank of Brigadier General. He then deployed to Kosovo, where he served for one year as Chief of Staff for KFOR Headquarters in Pristina. From 2009 to 2011 he served at Headquarters Marine Corps as the Director of Operations in Plans, Policies, and Operations. In 2012 he deployed to Afghanistan as the Commanding General of 1st Marine Division (forward) in support of Operation Enduring Freedom.
In addition to a B.S. in Engineering, he holds a Master of International Public Policy from Johns Hopkins University School of Advanced International Studies, and a M.S. in Military Studies. His formal military education includes the U.S. Army Infantry Officer Advanced Course, U.S. Marine Corps Command and Staff College, and U.S. Marine Corps School of Advanced Warfighting. He is a graduate of the U.S. Army Ranger School, Jumpmaster School, U.S. Navy Dive School, and U.S. Marine Corps Amphibious Reconnaissance School.
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