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- "That's the price you pay for working as an advisor to the President, Carol. You get to influence policy, but once that policy is promulgated, you support it, whether you believe it or not."
— Arnold van Damm
Arnold van Damm is a character that appears in several Tom Clancy Novels. He served as the White House Chief of Staff several Presidents. Introduced in Clear and Present Danger as the Chief of Staff for then-Governor J. Robert Fowler’s Presidential bid, he would continue in this capacity during the Presidencies of Fowler, Roger Durling, and Jack Ryan.
In 1999, Arnold van Damm helped Carol Brightling be confirmed as the Science Advisor to the President. He did this to give President Ryan a qualified supporter of the recent environmental movement in his administration. Brightling reported directly to Arnold van Damm over all matters that would require the President's attention.
Following a proposal to expand the Trans-Alaska Pipeline System, Brightling urged Damm to let her convince President Ryan to disapprove the bill. Damm refused the request, stating that the expansion would save the country millions of dollars and that the president of Atlantic Richfield promised him the operation would have minimal impact to the environment. Brightling grew angry and continued to argue, revealing that she had made a promise to the president of the Sierra Club, Kevin Mayflower, to stop the bill. Damm responded by saying that the Sierra Club was made up of extremists and threatened to fire Brightling if she did not publicly support the bill. A reluctant Brightling complied with his order and stormed out of his office after Damm requested she send him her statement to be released the following week.
A few weeks later, Brightling wrote a letter to Damm stating she would be taking a leave of absence to work on a "special project", which Damm did not object to. This project was revealed to be an attempt to unleash the Shiva virus to decimate the world's population and end pollution once and for all. Rainbow ultimately succeeded in stopping Brightling and her coconspirators from releasing the virus.
- Clear and Present Danger (1989)
- The Sum of All Fears (1991)
- Debt of Honor (1994)
- Executive Orders (1996)
- Rainbow Six (1998)
- The Bear and the Dragon (2000)
- The Teeth of the Tiger (2003)
- Threat Vector (2012)
- Command Authority (2013)
- Full Force and Effect (2014)
- Commander in Chief (2015)
- True Faith and Allegiance (2016)
- Point of Contact (2017)
- Power and Empire (2017)
- Line of Sight (2018)
- Oath of Office (2018)
- Enemy Contact (2019)
- Code of Honor (2019)
- Firing Point (2020)
- Shadow of the Dragon (2020)