Published: Thu, December 27, 2018
Life&Culture | By Peggy Hughes

Trump, annoyed by resignation letter, pushes out Mattis early

Trump, annoyed by resignation letter, pushes out Mattis early

Trump initially reacted to Mattis' resignation gracefully, tweeting that the defense chief and retired Marine general would be "retiring, with distinction, at the end of February", echoing Mattis' resignation letter.

Mr Trump made his displeasure with Mr Mattis clear on Saturday night by tweeting that he had been "ingloriously fired" by former President Barack Obama and he had given Mattis a second chance.

US President Donald Trump on Sunday announced he is to replace US Secretary of Defense James Mattis with his deputy, Patrick Shanahan, speeding up the Pentagon chief's planned exit days after he quit, citing key policy differences with the US president.

Shanahan also has overseen the Pentagon's audit, its development of a new missile defence policy that still has not been released and a fledgling effort to reduce waste in military expenditures. Trump said they discussed IS, "our mutual involvement in Syria, & the slow & highly co-ordinated pullout of USA troops from the area". "But if I do get orders, I think it is important for you to know that we are still with the security forces".

"It's all one big one story and that story is about the fitness or unfitness of Donald Trump to be president of the United States", Bernstein said. Historically when a secretary has resigned, he has stayed on until a successor is confirmed. No anger, " Tom Mattis reportedly said.

Shanahan, in his job as deputy defense secretary, has largely focused on internal Pentagon reform and issues like the creation of a Space Force, a project championed by Trump but resisted by some lawmakers and some in the Pentagon.

The announcement that Mattis would leave the administration came just after Trump stunned Washington and allies overseas in declaring that USA troops would leave Syria and significantly withdraw from Afghanistan. "It is the very definition of patriotism and integrity", Tom Mattis, James Mattis's older brother, told The Seattle Times earlier this week.

As Mattis played an important role in embodying Trump's strategic concept and buffering the president's strategic impulse, Zuo said, his departure would make it easier for Trump to further "rip off" his allies. It is hard work, but this is nothing new; since Washington crossed the DE on Christmas Day in 1776, American troops have missed holidays to defend our citizens' experiment in democracy.

Just after tweeting the announcement about Shanahan, Trump said he had had "a long and productive call" with Turkey's president, Recep Tayyip Erdogan. It notes the holiday time of year and that many military members are far from home.

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