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Admiral Munsch: The past few years have been "very busy"

Admiral Stuart Munsch
US Navy
Admiral Stuart Munsch

For Admiral Stuart Munsch, the last few years have been very busy – and challenging.

Munsch is a native of Oakes. He’s currently the commander of the Allied Joint Force Command, headquartered in Naples, Italy. He also commands the US Naval Forces Europe and US Naval Force Africa. And he is a member of the Council on Foreign Relations. He was the main speaker at a Memorial Day ceremony at the Veterans’ Memorial Cemetery south of Mandan.

In an interview with Prairie Public, Munsch said there is a lot going on in the world.

"In Ukraine, we have the largest war in Europe in over seven decades," Munsch said. "In Africa, we're at the highest pace of government coups since six decades ago. With what's going on in Gaza, we have the greatest number of deaths in over five decades. And in my NATO responsibility, which includes Kosovo and Serbia, we have had the most violent year in more than two decades."

Munsch said there is a rising level of concern about unrest in the world.

"We're also seeing increasing cooperation between Russia, China, Iran and North Korea," Munsch said. "All this is concerning about what the future may tell."

Munsch said here at home, the challenge is recruiting.

"All the services, except the Space Force, have some degree of challenge right now, in recruiting enough people," Munsch said.

Munsch said the military offers incentives for new recruits.

"That includes the opportunity to develop leadership skills, education programs that allow you to complete your service time with a degree debt-free," Munsch said. "There are many options, and we're trying to be the preferred options on all of them."

Munsch says he plans to be back in North Dakota during Navy Week, timed with the Fargo AirSho.

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