By Dialogo February 04, 2011 Chilean Defense Minister Andrés Allemand has designated Army Maj. Gen. Hernán Mardones as the new head of the Joint General Staff. Mardones replaces Maj. Gen. Cristián Le Dantec, who resigned on 17 January. Mardones has had a long career in the Army, which he entered as a cadet, graduating as an infantry second lieutenant in 1974. In 1987 and 1988 he worked in the Office of the Deputy Commander-in-Chief of the Army, and in 1991, after graduating from the War College (Academia de Guerra), he served as academic secretary of the Infantry School and assistant to the deputy commander-in-chief of the Army. In 2006 he was promoted to the rank of brigadier general and took up the post of director of Army Management and Development, and he subsequently served as commander of the Army Doctrine Division. In 2008 and 2009 he held the post of the institution’s director of Operations, following which he was promoted to the rank of major general in order to occupy the post of commander of Land Operations, in which he has been serving until now. In the academic arena, Mardones obtained a diploma in Institutional Management in Education from the Catholic University of Chile and a master’s degree in Military Sciences, Planning, and Strategic Management from the Army War College.