General John Allen departed active service in April 2013. In 2014, President Obama appointed General Allen as the Special Presidential Envoy to the Global Coalition Against ISIL. Prior to retirement, General Allen served for 19 months as the commander of United States forces in Afghanistan, and the commander of the fifty nation NATO International Security Assistance Force (ISAF) in Afghanistan. He is the first Marine Corps General Officer to command a theatre of war. Prior to his appointment as Commander, ISAF, he served for three years as Deputy Commander of the US Central Command. While Deputy Commanding General, Multinational Force – West, in Iraq, he was a key figure in the emergence of the Anbar Awakening movement (Sahawa al Anbar) which fundamentally changed the course of the war. Immediately following retirement, he led the Security Dialogue of the Middle Peace process as Special Advisor to the Secretary of Defense. General Allen is a 1976 graduate of the Naval Academy and holds several advanced degrees, including from Georgetown University. He is a Senior Fellow and Co-Director of the Center for 21st Century Security and Intelligence at the Brookings Institution, and is a Senior Fellow in the Merrill Center at the School of Advanced International Studies at Johns Hopkins.