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Pentagon Leaders Now in Quarantine

Coast Guard commander has tested positive
By Rob Quinn,  Newser Staff
Posted Oct 6, 2020 2:07 PM CDT

(Newser) – The pandemic has reached the highest levels of the Pentagon as well as the White House. Sources tell CNN that most of the Joint Chiefs of Staff are in quarantine because Adm. Charles Ray, vice commandant of the US Coast Guard, tested positive for the coronavirus on Monday. The sources say senior military leaders who were near Ray in meetings in recent days—including some in a secure space for classified information known as the "tank"—are awaiting test results. The only service chief not currently quarantining is Gen. David Berger, commandant of the Marine Corps, whose deputy attended the meetings where Ray was present, according to CNN's sources.

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The Pentagon hasn't disclosed when or where Ray was infected, but his recent movements included a Sept. 27 White House event involving Gold Star families, the Washington Post reports. Coast Guard spokesman Rear Adm. Jon Hickey says Ray will be quarantining for 14 days in line with Coast Guard COVID policies. A Pentagon rep said in a statement Tuesday that the readiness of the US military has not been affected. "We are conducting additional contact tracing and taking appropriate precautions to protect the force and the mission," he said. (Read more Pentagon stories.)

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