Story by NSHQ Public Affairs Office
Antonio M. Fletcher assumed command of NATO Special Operations Headquarters following his promotion to lieutenant general at NATO Special Operations Headquarters (NSHQ) on Friday, October 15, 2021.
Presiding over the promotion and assumption of command ceremonies Supreme Allied Commander Europe General Tod D. Wolters stated, “The Fletcher brand has been incredibly successful for 32 years. You’ve done it your way and I think you’ve done it the correct way. So I would contend that from now, until the time that you give up command of this great organization that you do it the Fletcher way because it’s given us great success up to this point, and we’re all convinced it will continue to do so in the future.”
This command recognizes and fully embraces the reality that we are all bound together by a common goal of a peaceful future.
Fletcher becomes the sixth commander of NSHQ and will be responsible for providing strategic special operations forces advice to NATO and coordinating the development of special operations forces capability and interoperability for Allies and Partners within the Alliance.
Fletcher graduated from the United States Military Academy (West Point, New York) in 1989. He is a career U.S. Army Special Forces officer and has led special operators at all levels. Most recently from August 2020 through September 2021 he served as the Defense Threat Reduction Deputy Director and from June 2018 through July 2020 as the Commander U.S. Special Operations Command South.
He pledged to work with Supreme Headquarters Allied Powers Europe and Allied and Partner Special Operations Commands to ensure special operations continued integration and interoperability across the Alliance.
“For my NATO SOF Headquarters teammates, I’ve always been extremely impressed with the work you do every day to earn the trust and confidence of our Allies and partners. This command recognises and fully embraces the reality that we are all bound together by a common goal of a peaceful future,” said Fletcher.
U.K. Brig. Rob Stephenson, Deputy Commander for NSHQ, served as the Acting Commander upon the retirement of U.S. Lt Gen. Eric Wendt in January 2021. Both Wolters and Fletcher thanked Stephenson for his dedication to NSHQ and ensuring the command met and exceeded all its goals during his time as Acting Commander.
Established in 2009, the mission of NATO Special Operations Headquarters provides strategic special operations forces advice to NATO and coordinates the development of special operations forces capability and interoperability for Allies and Partners. Within the comprehensive framework, NSHQ balances strategic and operational planning to employ relevant, ready, integrated special operations for NATO. NSHQ is located next to SHAPE near Mons, Belgium.