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Michael Langley To Make History As Marines’ First Black Four-Star General

Courtesy of Black Information Network

Lt. Gen. Michael E. Langley is set to become the first Black four-star general in the Marines’ 246-year history as head of U.S. military forces in Africa, the Washington Post reports.

Pending Senate confirmation on Thursday (July 21), Langley will become the Chief of U.S. Africa Command.

The historic confirmation would elevate Langley as the only Black man to have become a four-star general, an honor that has been accomplished by more than 70 white men in the Marines’ history.

Black men have previously become four-star generals in the Army, Navy, and Airforce, while only a handful have attained three-star status in the Marines.

Before Langley, retired Lt. Gen. Walter Gaskin said Black service members had yet to see themselves holding top leadership positions in the Marines.

‘“As you looked at the horizon, you saw the end,” Gaskin, the fourth Black man to ever become a three-star general, told the Post. “You didn’t see what was over the horizon because no one was there.”

Langley has earned his imminent four-star general status through his service in Afghanistan, Somalia, and Japan. He has also held top roles at the Pentagon and led U.S. Marine Corps Forces Europe and Africa.

His confirmation would represent a huge triumph over the obstacles and challenges generations of Black Marines faced before him.

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