George Joulwan

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General George Joulwan
George A. Joulwan, 1997.jpeg
George Joulwan
Born (1939-11-16) November 16, 1939 (age 83)
Pottsville, Pennsylvania
AllegianceUnited States of America
Service/branchEmblem of the United States Department of the Army.svg United States Army
RankUS-O10 insignia.svg General
Commands held
Battles/warsVietnam War
General George Joulwan visiting Bosnia and Herzegovina during his tenure as Supreme Allied Commander Europe.

George Alfred Joulwan (born November 16, 1939, Pottsville, Pennsylvania) is a retired United States Army general who served for 36 years. He finished his military career as the Commander-in-Chief of the United States European Command and NATO's Supreme Allied Commander (SACEUR) in 1997.[1]

As the Supreme Allied Commander, he conducted over 20 operations in the Balkans, Africa, and the Middle East.[1] When the United States sent forces into Bosnia in the 1990s, General Joulwan played the leading role in troop deployment, earning praise by President Clinton upon Joulwan's retirement.[2]

As SACEUR, General Joulwan created a strategic policy for the United States military engagement in Africa, which was the first time in U.S. history that such a policy had been crafted.[1]

Military career[edit]

His efforts have built a foundation for a Europe that is safe, secure, and democratic well into the 21st century. . . . General Joulwan's leadership and wise counsel will truly be missed in the senior decision-making ranks of our national security structure.

President William J. Clinton's statement
on the retirement of General Joulwan
December 23, 1996[3]

West Point[edit]

George Joulwan earned his college degree at the United States Military Academy at West Point. At West Point, he played football and basketball, earning two varsity letters as a football lineman.[1] Later in his career, General Joulwan earned a master's degree from Loyola University (Chicago) in political science.[4]


General Joulwan served from June 1966 to November 1967 and from June 1971 to January 1972 in Vietnam. He attended the Army War College, and served on the Staff and Faculty until 1979. He commanded the 2nd Brigade, 3rd Infantry Division (Mechanized), from June 1979 to September 1981, when he became Chief of Staff, 3rd Infantry Division.

White House[edit]

Major George Joulwan (Seated, far left) while serving as special assistant to The White House Chief of Staff General Alexander Haig at Haig's office in the White House with Secretary of State Henry Kissinger, August 8, 1974.

Joulwan served as special assistant to General Alexander Haig while still a Major within the U.S. Army, when Haig was serving as White House Chief of Staff from May 4, 1973 – September 21, 1974.[5]

National leadership[edit]

He served in various functions at the Pentagon from 1982 until June 1986, when he became the Deputy Chief of Staff for Operations, United States Army Europe and U.S. Seventh Army, Germany.

In March 1988 he was given command of the 3rd Armored Division and in 1989 he became Commanding General, U.S. V Corps.

From November 1990 until October 1993 he was Commander in Chief of United States Southern Command.

International leadership[edit]

He served as the Supreme Allied Commander, Europe (SACEUR) from 1993 to 1997, when he was succeeded by General Wesley Clark. He retired from command after serving in NATO.[6]

Highlights of General George Joulwan's military assignments[1][7]
Year Assignment Emblem Location
1963 Commander in the Infantry: First Battalion, 30th Infantry, 3rd Division
3rd Infantry Division SSI (1918-2015).svg
1964 Battalion Operations Officer (S-3): First Battalion, 26th Infantry of the First Division
26th INF COA.png
1968 Assistant professor of Military Sciences: Loyola University Chicago Chicago, IL
1971 101st Airborne Division
US 101st Airborne Division patch.svg
1972 Department of Tactics, United States Military Academy at West Point
U.S. Military Academy Coat of Arms.svg
West Point, NY
1973 Aide-de-Camp to the Vice Chief of Staff of the United States Army
Flag of the Vice Chief of Staff of the United States Army.svg
1973 Special Assistant to the President of the United States, Richard M. Nixon
Seal of the President of the United States.svg
1975 Special Assistant to the Supreme Allied Commander, Europe Europe
1975 Commander of the First Battalion of the 26th Infantry
26th INF COA.png
1977 Student (and later staff and faculty) at United States Army War College
Seal of the United States Army War College.png
1979 Commanded the 2nd Brigade of the 3rd Infantry Division
3rd Infantry Division SSI (1918-2015).svg
1981 Division Chief of Staff, 3rd Infantry Division
3rd Infantry Division SSI (1918-2015).svg
1982 Office of the Joint Chiefs of Staff
Joint Chiefs of Staff seal.svg
Arlington, VA
1983 Director of Force Development, Department of the Army
Emblem of the United States Department of the Army.svg
Pentagon, Washington, D.C.
1985 Deputy Chief of Staff for Operations, U.S. Army Europe and Seventh Army
USAREUR Insignia.svg
1988 Commander of the 3rd Armored Division
3rd US Armored Division SSI.svg
1989 Commanding General of the V Corps
V Corps.svg
1990 Commander-in-Chief, United States Southern Command
Seal of the United States Southern Command.svg
Panama, El Salvador and other locations
1993–1997 Commander-in-Chief, United States European Command and Supreme Allied Commander
Europe, worldwide

Post-military career[edit]

General Joulwan sits on the board of directors of Emergent BioSolutions, a biotechnology company, after a referral to the post by Allen Shofe, an executive at Emergent.[4]

His other post-military positions have included:[4]

He has also served as a military analyst for Fox News Channel. Notably, he appeared on Fox News Sunday a few weeks after September 11, 2001, with White House Chief of Staff Andrew Card and Senate Armed Forces chairman Carl Levin to discuss his experience in war planning and the American military's planning with regards to Afghanistan.[2]

Citizenship and philanthropy[edit]

General Joulwan has also served the St. Jude Children's Research Hospital as the Chair Emeritus of the Gourmet Gala Committee.[8] A public park in Pottsville, Pennsylvania was named in his honor.[9]

Personal life[edit]

General Joulwan had a twin brother, James Joseph Joulwan, who died in 2013. General Joulwan is of Lebanese heritage.[10][11] He is married and has eight grandchildren. George comes from a distinguished military family. His father fought with the US Navy in WWI, and his cousin fought with the US ARMY in WWII and was captured twice.

Awards and decorations[edit]

Combat Infantry Badge.svg Combat Infantryman Badge
Expert Infantry Badge.svg Expert Infantry Badge
United States Air Force Parachutist Badge.svg Parachutist Badge
Ranger Tab.svg Ranger Tab
US - Presidential Service Badge.png Presidential Service Badge
United States Army Staff Identification Badge.png Army Staff Identification Badge
Joint Chiefs of Staff seal.svg Joint Chiefs of Staff Identification Badge
Coat of arms of Supreme Headquarters Allied Powers Europe.svg SACEUR Badge
26th INF DUI.svg 26th Infantry Regiment Distinctive Unit Insignia
Bronze oak leaf cluster
Bronze oak leaf cluster
Defense Distinguished Service Medal (with two oak leaf clusters)
Army Distinguished Service Medal
Bronze oak leaf cluster
Silver Star (with oak leaf cluster)
Bronze oak leaf cluster
Legion of Merit (with oak leaf cluster)
Bronze oak leaf cluster
Bronze oak leaf cluster
Bronze Star (with valor device and two oak leaf clusters)
Bronze oak leaf cluster
Bronze oak leaf cluster
Bronze oak leaf cluster
Meritorious Service Medal (with three oak leaf clusters)
Award numeral 1.pngAward numeral 4.png Air Medal (with award numeral 14)
Joint Service Commendation Medal
Bronze oak leaf cluster
Army Commendation Medal (with oak leaf cluster)
Valorous Unit Award
Bronze star
National Defense Service Medal
Bronze star
Bronze star
Bronze star
Bronze star
Vietnam Service Medal (with four bronze service star)
Army Service Ribbon
Award numeral 5.png Overseas Service Ribbon (with award numeral 5)
Legion of Honor (Bolivia)
Military Order of the White Lion, Second Class (Czech Republic)[12]
Gold Medal for Distinguished Service (El Salvador)
Légion d'Honneur, Officier (France)
Knight Commanders' Cross of the Order of Merit of the Federal Republic of Germany (Germany)
Hesse Order of Merit (Germany)
Cross of Merit of the Armed Forces (Honduras)
Commander Cross with Star of the Order of Merit of the Republic of Hungary[13]
Grand Officer of the Order of Vasco Núñez de Balboa (Panama)
Commander Cross with Star of the Order of Merit of the Republic of Poland
Romanian Honor Emblem.png Romanian Emblem of Honor
Honour of Merit (Venezuela)
Gold star
Gold star
Gold star
Vietnam Gallantry Cross with three gold stars (Vietnam)
Vietnam Gallantry Cross Unit Citation (Vietnam)
Civil Actions Medal Unit Citation (Vietnam)
Vietnam Campaign Medal with "1960–"-device (Vietnam)



  1. ^ a b c d e Dyer, Thomas B. "2002 Distinguished Graduate Award: GEN George A. Joulwan '61". West Point Association of Graduates. Retrieved June 3, 2014.
  2. ^ a b "Text: Andrew Card on 'Fox News Sunday'". The Washington Post. September 30, 2011. Retrieved June 3, 2014.
  3. ^ "Statement on the Retirement of General George A. Joulwan, USA". The American Presidency Project. Gerhard Peters – The American Presidency Project. Retrieved June 3, 2014.
  4. ^ a b c "People: Emergent BioSolutions Inc (EBS.N)". Reuters. Retrieved June 3, 2014.
  5. ^ Haig, Alexander (September 1, 1992). Inner Circles: How America Changed the World : A Memoir. Grand Central Publisher.
  6. ^ "Arab-Americans in the United States Military". Arab-American Business and Professional Association. July 4, 2019. Archived from the original on November 11, 2021. Retrieved November 11, 2021.
  7. ^ a b "Resume of Service Career of George Alfred Joulwan, General". BosniaLINK. Defense Technical Information Center, U.S. Department of Defense. Archived from the original on June 20, 2005. Retrieved June 3, 2014.
  8. ^ "2014 Gourmet Gala Committee". St. Jude Children's Research Hospital. Memphis, Tennessee. Archived from the original on June 6, 2014. Retrieved June 3, 2014.
  9. ^ "Governor Rendell Makes Investment In Pottsville; Delivers On Promise to Redevelop Downtown". Free Online Library. Huntingdon Valley, Pennsylvania: Farlex, Inc. October 14, 2005. Retrieved June 3, 2014.
  10. ^ "Military Hall of Honor: George Alfred Joulwan, General, U.S. Army". Militaryhallofhonor.
  11. ^ "Former NATO Supreme Allied Commander's Journey To His Ancestors' Lebanon". Washington Report.
  12. ^ "Order of the White Lion". President of the Czech Republic. Retrieved July 14, 2014.
  13. ^ "NATO'S EUROPEAN COMMANDER DECORATED IN HUNGARY". Friends & Partners; Linking US-Russia Across the Internet. Natasha Bulashova, Greg Cole. Retrieved June 3, 2014.

External links[edit]

Military offices
Preceded by United States Southern Command
Succeeded by
Preceded by Supreme Allied Commander Europe
Succeeded by