Who is Michele Flournoy, Biden’s choice for US War Secretary?
Story Code : 900010
Michele Flournoy holds extensive ties to the US war establishment. While her career is noteworthy for the number of top-track offices she’s held, her critics are concerned she would bring a neoconservative war hawk attitude to Biden's White House.
She formerly served as Deputy Assistant Secretary of War for Strategy under former President Bill Clinton, as well as Under Secretary of War for Policy under former President Barack Obama.
From February 2009 to 2012, she also served as an advisor to US War Secretaries Robert Gates and Leon Panetta.
Flournoy’s ties to the War Department go back much further. In 2002, she went from working for the Pentagon and National Defense University to the neoconservative Center for Strategic and International Studies which is heavily funded by big business and Pentagon contributions.
Five years later, Flournoy co-founded the second-most state funded think tank in Washington, the Center for a New American Security. It was this landmark move that would secure a job for her in the Obama administration as undersecretary of war for policy.
While serving under former US President Bill Clinton, Flournoy was the main author of the May 1997 issue of the Quadrennial Defense Review [QDR], which stated that as part of its “Defense Strategy”, the United States would no longer be bound by the UN Charter’s prohibitions against the threat of or use of military power.
In 2016, when she was tapped as Hillary Clinton’s likely choice for War Secretary, Flournoy co-authored a CNAS report entitled “Expanding American Power” with former Vice President Dick Cheney’s aide Eric Edelman, and Bush’s National Security Advisor Stephen Hadley.
The report tried to show how Clinton’s foreign policy would be different from Obama. As such, it pressed for arms shipments to Ukraine, fresh military threats against Iran, more military action in Syria and Iraq, support of domestic oil and gas industries, and further military spending.
Flournoy and her team’s suggestions would not be fully enacted until US President Donald Trump’s tenure, who pursued and implemented the very same policies they proposed.