WESLEY K. CLARK Biography - Military related figures

 
 

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WESLEY K. CLARK

Name: Wesley Kanne Clark                                                           
Born: December 23, 1944  Chicago, Illinois                                         
                                                                                     
General Wesley Kanne Clark, (born December 23, 1944) is a retired four-star         
general of the United States Army. Clark was valedictorian of his class at West     
Point, was awarded a Rhodes Scholarship to the University of Oxford where he       
obtained a degree in PPE (Philosophy, Politics & Economics), and later graduated   
from the Command and General Staff College with a master's degree in military       
science. He spent 34 years in the Army and the Department of Defense, receiving     
many military decorations, several honorary knighthoods, and a Presidential         
Medal of Freedom.                                                                   
                                                                                     
Clark commanded Operation Allied Force in the Kosovo War during his term as the     
Supreme Allied Commander Europe of NATO from 1997 to 2000. Some of Clark's         
command decisions during the conflict, such as his statements at press briefings   
and his actions at Pri┼ítina International Airport, were heavily criticized. At     
times, he had a difficult relationship with Secretary of Defense William Cohen     
and Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff General Hugh Shelton, which led to       
rumors Clark was forced into retirement, though both he and the Department of       
Defense said his retirement was merely standard personnel movement.                 
                                                                                     
Clark joined the 2004 race for the Democratic Party presidential nomination as a   
candidate on September 17, 2003, but withdrew from the primary race on February     
11, 2004 endorsing and campaigning for the eventual Democratic nominee, John       
Kerry. Clark currently leads a political action committee - "WesPAC: Securing       
America" - which was formed after the primaries, and used it to support             
numerous Democratic Party candidates in the 2006 midterm elections. Clark was       
considered a potential candidate for the Democratic nomination in 2008, but, on     
September 15, 2007, endorsed Senator Hillary Clinton.