General James Flagg III
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General Lawrence Flagg came from a long line of soldiers. Early in his career, his skilled marksmanship earned him the position of captain of the Army pistol team. In the late 1970s, Flagg saw the need to combat terrorist threats at home and abroad. To do so, he created Special Counter-Terrorist Group Delta, and code-named it "G.I. Joe," after the legendary team of soldiers from the 1960s. Even as Flagg created the team, the terrorist organization known as Cobra Command was rising in power. Flagg placed Colonel Clayton Abernathy, code-named "Hawk," in direct field command of the team. While Hawk reported to Flagg, Flagg reported to General Austin. Austin did his best to protect Flagg and the Joes from his superiors, the politically-minded committee of generals known as "The Jugglers."
Flagg's strength lay in his ability to know personnel and who the right man for the job was. Hawk became his first choice when Flagg saw him court-martialed after he accepted responsibility for the beating of a terrorist suspect to get information needed to prevent a bombing that could have killed a number of children. Though a sergeant serving under Hawk had been the one interrogating the terrorist, Hawk was not willing to place the blame entirely on him. Hawk's superiors were angered by the decision, but Flagg was impressed with Hawk's principals. When the general in direct command above Hawk hired mercenaries to kill the young colonel, Flagg and Alessandro "Sparks" Verdi threatened to expose the general if he did not drop the charges against Hawk. Soon after, Flagg appointed Hawk commander of the newly-forming G.I. Joe team.
As the original roster of the team was filled, General Flagg trusted Hawk to choose many members of the team. Though Flagg did choose some himself, often relying on the advice of Sparks, who served as the team's liason within the Pentagon. Flagg personally recruited team member Flash from the Army's Aberdeen Proving Grounds. Flagg was never an arrogant man and was under no delusions about his own abilities. His place was behind a desk making high-level decisions. The military operations and planning for the Joe team rested on Hawk's shoulders, but Flagg was always on hand for support.
Flagg was one of the few people who knew of the Joe team's classified 14th member, sniper Sergeant First Class "Shooter" Craig. After Craig was killed while secretly covering the Joe team's mission to rescue Dr. Adele Burkhart, he personally visited her mother to inform her of her daughter's death. He insisted the rest of the Joe team attended her funeral, at which he spoke, but they never knew why they were there. On occasion, Flagg was personally involved with the team. When Cobra tried to capture the G.I. Joe Mobat tank at the Armed Forces Day Parade in New York, Flagg nearly captured Cobra Commander, but was unwilling to risk the lives of the innocent people in the crowd. A bullet fired by Cobra Commander grazed Flagg's head, but the wound was minor. When Clutch wondered why Flagg didn't shoot the Commander, he answered, "...well, that's why we're the good guys."
Months later, General Flagg sent the Joes on a mission into Sierra Gordo which sparked a chase around the world to stop Cobra's plans and find the Cobra courier known as Scar-Face. The Joes took the injured Baroness into The Pit, possibly violating protocol, and Flagg vowed to take full responsibility. Soon after, when Cobra led an assault on The Pit, Flagg tried to stop Major Bludd and Scar-Face from escaping their cell. A struggle ensued and Bludd fatally shot Flagg. Despite Doc's best efforts, he couldn't save the general. A short time later, a ceremony was held and General Flagg was buried at Arlington National Cemetary. Several months later, a newly constructed aircraft carrier, the U.S.S. Flagg, was named in his honor. The Flagg became the main naval vessel used by the G.I. Joe team. Today, Sebastian Bludd remains at large and is still wanted by the government for Flagg's murder.
Birthplace: Philadelphia, Pennsylvania
Rank: Brigadier General
Primary Military Specialty: Infantry
Secondary Military Specialty: Intelligence
Status: Killed in action
First Appearance: G.I. JOE #1 (July 1982)
First Appearance: G.I. Joe: A Real American Hero (1982) #1
View a chronological listing of this character's appearances
G.I. Joe (1982)
#1 G.I. Joe Declassified (2006)
- 'Operation: Dame Destinee'
G.I. Joe Yearbook (1985)
G.I. Joe: A Real American Hero (1982)
G.I. Joe: Battle Files (2002)
G.I. Joe: Best of Baroness (2010)
G.I. Joe: Best of Destro (2009)
G.I. Joe: Operation: Disappearance! (1983)
nn G.I. Joe: Scarlett: Declassified (2006)
- 'Operation: Disappearance!'
G.I. Joe: The Trojan Gambit (1983)
Hundred Penny Press: G.I. Joe: A Real American Hero (2011)
#1 Hundred Penny Press: G.I. Joe: A Real American Hero (2014)
- 'Operation: Lady Doomsday'
#1 Snake Eyes: Declassified (2005)
- 'Operation: Lady Doomsday'
Tales of G.I. Joe (1988)
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