Obama appoints Marine as deputy head of Pentagon office

Marine Lt. Gen. Robert Schmidle will be the new deputy director of the Defense Department's Cost Assessment and Program Evaluation office, Pentagon spokesman Col. Steve Warren announced Tuesday. 

Schmidle is currently the deputy commandant for Marine aviation units, setting policy and facilitating the manning, training and equipping of Marine aviation units.  


He has also served as deputy commander for U.S. Cyber Command, and has had a number of other leadership roles in Marine Corps and Pentagon planning and budgeting. 

Coincidentally, Schmidle appeared in a CBS "60 Minutes" piece that aired on Sunday defending the F-35 Joint Strike Fighter jet, the Pentagon's costliest weapons system in history. 

The jet, which is still in development and testing, has faced a number of setbacks and technical problems that has caused the program to run vastly behind schedule and over budget. 

But according to "60 Minutes," Schmidle has been somewhat of an enforcer for the Marine Corps's version. 

After one of the planes that Lockheed delivered was found to have gaps in its stealth coating, Schmidle said he immediately sent pictures of the gaps to Lockheed and said, "So talk to me." 

"I had a feeling you said more than just 'Talk to me,' " CBS News correspondent David Martin said. "Did you say, 'What the hell?'" 

"You know Marines tend to be relatively direct in the way that we try to help people understand what our, what our particular concerns are," Schmidle responded.