The unpredictable moves and abrupt decisions of President Donald Trump have become the root cause of unexpected clashes within the Trump administration. With his latest announcement on pulling out the US troops from Syria, the President has vexed the Defense Secretary James Mattis.
On Thursday, Mattis announced that he would resign at the end of February 2019. In a ruthless letter, he said that the President had “the right to have a secretary whose views are better aligned with yours.”
The resignation from the defense secretary followed Trump’s decision of withdrawing the US group forces from Syria, which came without any deliberations with the lawmakers, senior advisers and the defense officials. The reports on a potential drawdown in Afghanistan have also evoked the quitting of James Mattis.
The decision of withdrawing the military groups from Syria created an intense turmoil within the Trump administration. Besides, the Pentagon officials and members of the foreign policy establishment also expressed strong opposition on both the moves of President.
In the unsparing letter, Mattis also gave a fair idea about the manner in which the President treated hi NATO allies, as well as the rival countries including China and Russia. He wrote that the President’s “core belief” is that America’s strength is “inextricably linked with the strength of our unique and comprehensive system of alliances and partnerships.”
The letter said, “My views on treating allies with respect and also being clear-eyed about both malign actors and strategic competitors are strongly held and informed by over four decades of immersion in these issues.”
“We must do everything possible to advance an international order that is most conducive to our security, prosperity and values, and we are strengthened in this effort by the solidarity of our alliances,” it continued.
Mattis concluded these thoughts by saying, “Because you have a right to have a Secretary of Defense whose views are better aligned with yours on these and other subjects, I believe it is right for me to step down from my position.”
The resignation from James Mattis received a gloomy reaction from the Congress. The House Democratic Leader, Nancy Pelosi, poised to be the next Speaker of the House, said that the announcement had left her shaken.
“I am shaken by the resignation of General Mattis and pray for our country,” she said.
Republican Senator Ben Sasse stated, “This is a sad day for America because Secretary Mattis was giving advice the President needs to hear.”
The Nebraska Republican said, “Mattis rightly believes that Russia and China are clear adversaries and that we are at war with jihadists across the globe, who plot to kill Americans at home. Isolationism is a weak strategy that will harm Americans and America’s allies. Radical Islamic jihadists are still at war with us, and no ISIS is not gone.”
While Trump has claimed that America’s mission of defeating ISIS in Syria has been achieved, policymakers and advisers have raised concerns that the remnants of the group could come back in power and stand against the United States in the future.
The lack of coordination between the President and his administration has prompted the wise members of his team to step down from the White House, and James Mattis is an apparent example of this fact.
His letter to Trump didn’t include any statements to indicate that it was an honor for Mattis to serve the President. Rather, it was plainly initiated with “Dear Mr. President” and concluded with few lines to express that it was an honor for him to serve the nation and “our men and women in uniform.”
The resignation from James Mattis has been shocking for both Republicans and Democrats. It has demonstrated the lack of unity in the administration, indicating one of the domains where Trump has failed as a leader.
The reason behind the resignation is also a notable aspect, which signifies a benchmark of Trump’s irrational behavior and lack of democratic approach. His administration, which is against his decisions, reveals how the President doesn’t value expert opinions and experienced members of the administration.
While the White House has lost one of the wisest members of the administration, it is being reported that Mattis could be replaced by Republican senator Lindsey Graham of South Carolina.
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