Leon Panetta was sworn in Friday as U.S. defense secretary, replacing Robert Gates.
The Senate confirmed Panetta, the former CIA director, in a rare 100-0 vote last week.
After his confirmation vote, Panetta pledged to "work to ensure that we continue to have the strongest, best-trained and best-equipped military in the world."
Among Panetta's top priorities: overseeing the completion of the U.S. withdrawal from Iraq this year and beginning the process of winding down the unpopular war in Afghanistan.
About 33,000 U.S. "surge" troops are expected to be withdrawn from Afghanistan by next summer, with the remaining 68,000 leaving by the end of 2014.FULL STORY