James L. Jones

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Person.png James L. Jones  Rdf-entity.pngRdf-icon.png
(Marine, Diplomat)
440px-James L. Jones 2.jpg
Gen. Jones in 2005
Kansas City, Missouri, U.S.
Alma materGeorgetown University
ParentsJames L. Jones Sr.
Member ofAtlantic Council/Distinguished Leadership Awards, Belfer Center for Science and International Affairs
Interest ofDynology
Supreme Allied Commander Europe, Atlantic Council, Bilderberger

Employment.png Atlantic Council/Chairman

In office
2017 - 2018
Succeeded byJohn F. W. Rogers
Interim Chairman

Employment.png National Security Advisor

In office
January 20, 2009 - October 8, 2010
DeputyTom Donilon
Preceded byStephen Hadley
Succeeded byTom Donilon

Employment.png Atlantic Council/Chairman

In office
2007 - 2009
Preceded byHenry Catto
Succeeded byChuck Hagel

Employment.png Supreme Allied Commander Europe Wikipedia-icon.png

In office
January 17, 2003 - December 7, 2006
Preceded byJoseph Ralston
Succeeded byBantz J. Craddock

Employment.png Commandant of the Marine Corps

In office
July 1, 1999 - January 12, 2003

James Logan Jones Jr. is a retired United States Marine Corps four-star general who was the 22nd United States National Security Advisor from 2009 to 2010. During his career, he served as the 32nd Commandant of the Marine Corps from July 1999 to January 2003, and Commander, United States European Command and Supreme Allied Commander Europe from 2003 to 2006 and Jones retired from the Marine Corps on February 1, 2007, after 40 years of service.

General James L. Jones attended the Bilderberg meeting in 2005, as Supreme Allied Commander Europe.

After retiring from the Marine Corps, Jones remained involved in national security and foreign policy issues. In 2007, Jones served as chairman of the Congressional Independent Commission on the Security Forces of Iraq,[1] which investigated the capabilities of the Iraqi police and armed forces to serve the occpation power. In November 2007, he was appointed by the U.S. Secretary of State as special envoy for Middle East security.

He chairman of the Atlantic Council from June 2007 to January 2009, when he assumed the post of National Security Advisor which he held until November 2010. He is also on the board of trustees of the Center for Strategic and International Studies. after retirement, Jones earned a salary and bonus of $900,000 from the US Chamber of Commerce, as well as director fees of $330,000 from the Boeing Company and $290,000 from the Chevron Corporation.

Early life and education

Jones was born in Kansas City, Missouri, on December 19, 1943. He is the son of Charlotte Ann (née Ground) and James L. Jones Sr.,[2] a decorated Marine in World War II who was an officer in the Observer Group and the commanding officer of its successor, the Amphibious Reconnaissance Battalion. Having spent his formative years in France, where he attended the American School of Paris,[3][4] he returned to the United States, graduating from Groveton High School in Fairfax County, Virginia, then attended Georgetown University Edmund A. Walsh School of Foreign Service, from which he received a Bachelor of Science degree in 1966.

In January 1967, Jones was commissioned a second lieutenant in the United States Marine Corps. Upon completion of The Basic School at Marine Corps Base Quantico, Virginia, in October 1967, he was ordered to South Vietnam, where he served as a platoon and company commander with Golf Company, 2nd Battalion, 3rd Marines. While overseas, he was promoted to first lieutenant in June 1968.[5]

From January 1976 to August 1979, Jones served in the Officer Assignments Section at Headquarters Marine Corps, Washington, D.C. During this assignment, he was promoted to major in July 1977. Remaining in Washington, his next assignment was as the Marine Corps liaison officer to the United States Senate, where he served until July 1984. In this assignment, his first commander was John McCain, then a United States Navy captain. He was promoted to lieutenant colonel in September 1982.[6]

Senior staff and command

Jones was selected to attend the National War College in Washington, D.C. Following graduation in June 1985, he was assigned to command the 3rd Battalion, 9th Marines, 1st Marine Division, at Camp Pendleton, California, from July 1985 to July 1987.

In August 1987, Jones returned to Headquarters Marine Corps, where he served as senior aide to the Commandant of the Marine Corps. He was promoted to colonel in April 1988, and became the Military Secretary to the Commandant of the Marine Corps in February 1989. During August 1990, Jones was assigned as the commanding officer of the 24th Marine Expeditionary Unit (24th MEU) at Marine Corps Base Camp Lejeune, North Carolina.

During his tour with the 24th MEU, Jones participated in Operation Provide Comfort in Northern Iraq and Turkey. He was advanced to brigadier general on April 23, 1992. Jones was assigned to duties as deputy director, J-3, United States European Command in Stuttgart, Germany, on July 15, 1992. During this tour of duty, he was reassigned as chief of staff, Joint Task Force Provide Promise, for operations in Bosnia and Herzegovina and North Macedonia.[6]

Returning to the United States, Jones was advanced to the rank of major general in July 1994 and was assigned as commanding general, 2nd Marine Division, Marine Forces Atlantic, Marine Corps Base Camp Lejeune. Jones next served as director, Expeditionary Warfare Division (N85), Office of the Chief of Naval Operations, during 1996, then as the deputy chief of staff for plans, policies, and operations, Headquarters Marine Corps, Washington, D.C. He was advanced to lieutenant general on July 18, 1996. His next assignment was as the military assistant to the Secretary of Defense.[5]

Jones assumed duties as the commander of United States European Command (EUCOM) on January 16, 2003, and Supreme Allied Commander Europe (SACEUR) the following day. He was the first Marine Corps general to serve as SACEUR/EUCOM commander.

Post-military career

Business roles

Following his retirement from the military, Jones became president of the Institute for 21st Century Energy,[7] an affiliate of the US Chamber of Commerce;[7] he was also chair of the board of directors of the Atlantic Council of the United States from June 2007[8] until January 2009, when he assumed the post of National Security Advisor.[9] Jones was also a member of the guiding coalition for the Project on National Security Reform, as well as chairman of the Independent Commission on the Iraqi Security Forces.[10] He was a member of the board of directors of The Boeing Company from June 21, 2007, to December 15, 2008, serving on the company's Audit and Finance Committees.[11][12] Jones was also a member of the board of directors of Cross Match Technologies, a privately held biometric solutions company, from October 2007 to January 2009.[13][14]

Jones was employed on the board of trustees of the Center for Strategic and International Studies (CSIS) from 2007 to 2008, and then began serving again in 2011.[15] He was a member of the board of directors of Chevron Corporation from May 28, 2008 to December 5, 2008, serving on the Board Nominating and Governance and Public Policy Committees.[16][17][18] According to the first report since Jones re-entered government service in January 2009, Jones earned a salary and bonus of $900,000 from the US Chamber, as well as director fees of $330,000 from the Boeing Company and $290,000 from the Chevron Corporation.[19]

After leaving the Obama administration, Jones returned as a Fellow at the US Chamber in 2011.[20]

The board of directors of General Dynamics has elected Jones to be a director of the corporation, effective August 3, 2011. Also, on January 13, 2012, Jones joined Deloitte Consulting LLP as a senior adviser who will work with Federal and commercial consulting clients within Deloitte's Department of Defense and Intel segments. In early 2013, Jones joined OxiCool Inc's Advisory Board.[21]

Diplomatic roles

Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice asked Jones twice to be Deputy Secretary of State after Robert Zoellick resigned. He declined.[22]

On May 25, 2007, Congress created an Independent Commission on the Security Forces of Iraq to investigate for 120 days the capabilities of the Iraq armed forces and police.[23] Jones served as chairman of that commission and reported on Congress on September 6, 2007,[24] noting serious deficiencies in the Iraq Interior Ministry and in the Iraq National Police.

Rice appointed Jones as a special envoy for Middle East security on November 28, 2007, to work with both Israelis and Palestinians on security issues.[25][26]

Jones serves as a Senior Fellow at the Bipartisan Policy Center (BPC), where he works on a variety of national security and energy-related issues.[27] Jones is also a co-chair of BPC's Energy Project.

Jones is an Advisory Board Member of Spirit of America, a 501(c)(3) organization that supports the safety and success of Americans serving abroad and the local people and partners they seek to help.[28]

National Security Advisor

Jones shakes hands with President of Afghanistan Hamid Karzai.

On December 1, 2008, President-elect Obama announced Jones as his selection for National Security Advisor.[29][30] The National Security Advisor is appointed by the president without confirmation by the United States Senate.

The selection surprised people because, as Michael Crowley reported, "The two men didn't meet until Obama's foreign policy aide, Mark Lippert, arranged a 2005 sit-down, and, as of this October, Jones had only spoken to Obama twice".[31] Crowley speculated that Jones' record suggests he is "someone who, unencumbered by strong ideological leanings, can evaluate ideas dispassionately whether they come from left or right", and, "This is probably why Obama picked him". Jones was also picked because he is well respected and likely to possess the skills to navigate the other prestigious and powerful cabinet members.

Though he didn't know Gates especially well, both men shared long experience in the national security establishment (Gates was in the Air Force and previously headed the CIA). Jones and Clinton had a more direct connection from her tenure on the Senate Armed Services Committee. The two were said to have particularly clicked at a 2005 conference on security policy in Munich. Jones hosted a small private dinner that included Clinton and South Carolina Republican Senator Lindsey Graham, among others; at the end of the convivial evening, according to one person present, Jones followed Clinton out to her car to visit in private.[31]

Jones assumed the post when Obama was sworn into office on January 20, 2009. He announced his resignation as National Security Advisor on October 8, 2010, and was succeeded by Thomas E. Donilon.[32]

Advocate for Iranian terrorist group

In March 2013, Jones was quoted comparing the conditions for Iranian members of the People's Mujahedin of Iran in a US camp in Iraq with the conditions of detention for captives held in the Guantanamo Bay detention camps.[33] While addressing the Iranian American Cultural Society of Michigan, Jones said Guantanamo captives "are treated far better" than the Iranian internees. Jones criticized other aspects of the Obama administration's policy on Iran. Foreign Policy magazine noted that Jones had not volunteered whether he had been paid for this speaking engagement.


Events Participated in

Bilderberg/20055 May 20058 May 2005Germany
The 53rd Bilderberg, 132 guests
Munich Security Conference/202317 February 202319 February 2023Germany
Annual conference of mid-level functionaries from the military-industrial complex - politicians, propagandists and lobbyists. The real decisions are made by deep politicians behind the scenes, elsewhere.
WEF/Annual Meeting/200724 January 200728 January 2007World Economic Forum
Only the 450 public figures listed of ~2200 participants


  1. http://csis.org/program/independent-commission-security-forces-iraq
  2. https://web.archive.org/web/20160407060256/http://freepages.genealogy.rootsweb.ancestry.com/~battle/celeb/jamesjones.ht
  3. http://www.huffingtonpost.com/david-wallechinsky/national-security-advisor_b_155889.html
  4. http://personallifemedia.com/podcasts/212-living-dialogues/episodes/3968-ted-sorensen-counselor-life-edge
  5. a b http://usforeignpolicy.about.com/od/theobamaadministration/a/james-jones-profile.htm
  6. a b http://www.defense.gov/Bios/BiographyDetail.aspx?BiographyID=66%7C
  7. a b https://web.archive.org/web/20070701120122/http://www.energyxxi.org/xxi/default
  8. https://web.archive.org/web/20090120221600/http://www.acus.org/docs/Press%20Release/070518-JONES%20ELECTED%20ATLANTIC%20COUNCIL%20CHAIRMAN.pdf
  9. http://www.acus.org/event_blog/general-jones-congratulated-bid-farewell-atlantic-council
  10. https://web.archive.org/web/20080318203442/http://www.acus.org/Gen_James_L_Jones_Atlantic_Council_09-12-2007_page2.asp
  11. https://www.sec.gov/Archives/edgar/data/12927/000119312508057498/ddef14a.htm#toc96257_23
  12. https://web.archive.org/web/20081217044639/http://www.boeing.com/news/releases/2008/q4/081215b_nr.html
  13. https://web.archive.org/web/20071017162821/http://crossmatch.net/pr/Jones_10_03_07.html
  14. https://web.archive.org/web/20150923211238/http://www.crossmatch.com/pr/1_12_09.html
  15. http://csis.org/press/press-release/former-national-security-advisor-general-james-jones-rejoins-csis-board-trustees
  16. http://www.bizjournals.com/sanfrancisco/stories/2008/03/24/daily29.html
  17. https://web.archive.org/web/20080803081859/http://www.chevron.com/about/leadership/boardofdirectors/jones/
  18. https://web.archive.org/web/20081212163629/http://www.chevron.com/news/press/release/?id=2008-12-10
  19. "Hedge Fund Paid Summers $5.2 Million in Past Year" by John D. McKinnon and F. W. Farnum, wsj.online, April 4, 2009. Retrieved 4/5/09.
  20. U.S. Chamber of Commerce (2011). General James Jones Named U.S. Chamber Fellow. Retrieved April 3, 2011.
  21. http://www.prnewswire.com/news-releases/general-james-jones-joins-developer-of-green-air-conditioning-oxicool-inc-202389021.html
  22. https://blogs.wsj.com/washwire/2006/11/21/potential-deputies-to-rice-no-thanks/%7Cdate= November 21, 2006
  23. P.L. 110-28 § 1314(e)(2).
  24. https://web.archive.org/web/20071011044722/http://www.c-span.org/pdf/jonesreport090607.pdf
  25. https://2001-2009.state.gov/secretary/rm/2007/11/95838.htm
  26. https://www.bloomberg.com/apps/news?pid=20601087&sid=ae2RGIfF0kB8&refer=home
  27. http://www.bipartisanpolicy.org/news/press-releases/2011/02/bipartisan-policy-center-welcomes-general-jim-jones
  28. https://spiritofamerica.org/staff/general-james-jones[dead link]
  29. https://web.archive.org/web/20081201182614/http://change.gov/newsroom/entry/key_members_of_obama_biden_national_security_team_announced/
  30. http://www.nbcnews.com/id/27983003
  31. a b http://www.tnr.com/politics/story.html?id=739be2da-4d50-49ee-b1c1-60eb865a69c6
  32. https://www.google.com/hostednews/canadianpress/article/ALeqM5gD-6wdjYRjpr-4VV4vZb_eFtjbjg?docId=4777657
  33. https://web.archive.org/web/20130318155512/http://thecable.foreignpolicy.com/posts/2013/03/12/jim_jones_camp_liberty_is_worse_than_guantanamo