Australian takes control of U.S. training in Pacific

A two-star general from the Australian Defense Force has taken over for the United States’ training and exercise program in the Pacific.

Maj. Gen. Richard Burr — sporting a brown-and-green uniform among a sea of U.S. Army camouflage, along with an Australian salute that puts his palm facing out — is the first non-American to assume the high-ranking position, The Associated Press reports.

The historic appointment sends a clear message, the AP reports: The U.S. Army is serious about reaching out to allies and growing a coalition defense strategy in the region.

U.S. Army Pacific headquarters is near Honolulu.

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