TALLINN, Estonia (September 27, 2011) — Gen. James Mattis, the commander of U.S. Central Command, visited Estonia to meet with government and military officials and gain a better appreciation of their views on current international issues.
Mattis, who oversees U.S. military operations in 20 countries in the broader Middle East, including Afghanistan and Iraq, met with Estonian Prime Minister Andrus Ansip, Minister of Defense Mart Laar, and Gen. Ants Laaneots, the Chief of Defense.
This was Mattis’ first trip to Estonia as CENTCOM Commander, and he took the opportunity to hold a roundtable with senior civilian and military officials to get their insights from Estonia’s steadfast participation in Afghanistan and other topics, such as cyberdefense and NATO’s future.
“I have benefited from the wise counsel of Estonian officers for years and am honored to have been able to visit,” said Mattis. “Estonia may be one of the smallest countries in Europe, but its willingness to deploy in support of Coalition operations ensures its impact is felt around the world. We thank Estonia for its remarkable support.”