4 Things You Need To Know About The New Number 1 At The VA

Then-USO President Sloan Gibson delivers remarks as he launches the 2012 USO Gala at the Washington Hilton in Washington, D.C., Nov. 2, 2012. Gibson is now acting secretary of Veterans Affairs, following Eric Shinseki's resignation.
DoD photo by Glenn Fawcett

President Barack Obama accepted the resignation of Veterans Affairs Secretary Eric Shinseki today, an enormous development in a widening scandal of veterans not receiving medical care from the VA.

But Shinseki’s departure puts the burden of leadership squarely on the shoulders of Sloan Gibson, the former deputy secretary of Veterans Affairs, who is now acting secretary.

Here’s what you need to know about Gibson:

1. He is an ex-Army Ranger

Gibson earned both his airborne and Ranger qualifications in the U.S. Army, where he served as an infantry officer after graduation from West Point.

2. He ran the USO

Before his appointment to the VA, Gibson spent five years as the president and chief executive officer of the United Service Organization, the prominent nonprofit that provides morale-boosters and entertainment to service members and their families.

3. He has experience in the private sector

In 2004, Gibson retired as chief financial officer and chairman of AmSouth Bancorporation, a now defunct finance and insurance corporation.

4. He has been at the VA less than six months

Gibson was confirmed by the Senate Feb. 11 of this year, giving him just 108 days of experience in the organization he now leads.

It’s unclear how long Gibson will serve as interim secretary --- Obama expressed a desire to name a replacement quickly --- but for now, Gibson’s at the helm.

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It wasn't until more than two weeks later authorities finally caught up to Michael Brown at his mom's home, which was the scene of the crime.

Brown stuffed himself into a tight spot in his camper during an hours-long search of the vehicle on Nov. 10, according to NBC affiliate WSLS in Virginia. A day earlier, cops said Brown fatally shot his mother's boyfriend, Rodney Brown. The AWOL Marine remained on the lam until Nov. 27, where he was finally apprehended without incident.

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Machinist's Mate Auxiliary Fireman Gabriel Antonio Romero of San Antonio, an armed watch-stander on the attack submarine USS Columbia, shot three civilian workers Dec. 4 and then turned a gun on himself while the sub rested in dry dock 2 for a major overhaul, the Navy said.

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Since the Washington Post first published the "Afghanistan papers," I have been reminded of a scene from "Apocalypse Now Redux" in which Army Col. Walter Kurtz reads to the soldier assigned to kill him two Time magazine articles showing how the American people had been lied to about Vietnam by both the Lyndon Johnson and Richard Nixon administrations.

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"How do they smell to you, soldier?" Kurtz asks.

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