Ashton B. Carter on his role as deputy secretary of defense

Pentagon’s second in charge oversees downsizing
The Boston Globe
July 16, 2012
Featured: Ashton B. Carter, on leave from the Belfer Center Board of Directors to serve as deputy secretary of defense
Topic: Carter’s role as deputy secretary of defense

“WASHINGTON — Neat piles of briefing books and red folders stamped ‘top secret’ blanket the large oak desk that once belonged to General George S. Patton. The national monuments are visible through blast-resistant windows. Steps away, in the custody of a one-star general, are the protocols for ordering the shoot down of a hijacked airliner.

For Ashton B. Carter, his Pentagon office is a far cry from the theoretical jousting of Harvard and MIT’s lecture halls, where he spent much of two decades as one of the nation’s leading national security scholars.

Now he is the Pentagon’s second in command, which makes him the day-to-day manager of the world’s largest bureaucracy at a uniquely challenging time: the military is forced to downsize not in peacetime but as the world grows more unsettled.”

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