WASHINGTON — President Reagan announced Thursday that he will nominate Alton G. Keel Jr., his acting national security adviser, as ambassador to the North Atlantic Treaty Organization.
If confirmed by the Senate, Keel will succeed David M. Abshire, who has announced plans to leave the NATO post to return to his former position as head of the private Center for Strategic and International Studies in Washington.
To succeed Keel as deputy national security adviser, Reagan chose Lt. Gen. Colin L. Powell Jr., commanding general of the Army's Fifth Corps in Frankfurt, West Germany.
Powell will serve as deputy to Frank C. Carlucci, who takes over next month as national security adviser. Carlucci was named by Reagan after Vice Adm. John M. Poindexter resigned following the disclosure that profits from arms sales to Iran had been diverted to the rebels in Nicaragua.
Powell was senior military assistant to Carlucci, who was then deputy secretary of defense, from January through May of 1981.
Keel joined the NSC staff in July and became Poindexter's deputy after the death of Donald Fortier. He became acting national security adviser after Poindexter resigned.