Trump Axes Tillerson Over Iran Deal – Replaces Him With CIA Chief Pompeo

Back in December, we asked, “Will CIA Director Mike Pompeo Replace Rex Tillerson As Secretary Of State?” The answer, as of moments ago, is yes. Moments ago, the WaPo first reported, and then President Trump tweeted, that he has ousted Secretary of State Rex Tillerson and replaced him with CIA Director Mike Pompeo, launching a major change to his national security team amid delicate negotiations with North Korea.

Tillerson had learned his fate last Friday, according to the Washington Post, when Trump asked Tillerson to step aside, causing the embattled top diplomat cut short his trip to Africa on Monday to return to Washington, using illness as an alibi.

Mike Pompeo will replace the former Exxon CEO at the State Department, while Gina Hapsel — the deputy director at the CIA — will Pompeo at the CIA, becoming the first woman to run the spy agency, if confirmed.

According to WaPo, the president — who has long clashed will Tillerson, who he believes is “too establishment” in his thinking — felt it was important to make the change now, as he prepares for talks with North Korean leader Kim Jong Un, as well as upcoming trade negotiations, three White House officials said.

Furthermore, it is worth noting that the Tillerson’s announcement comes just hours after the now former Secretary of State said that Russia is “clearly” behind the Skripal poisoning which “will trigger a response“, something he said when he already knew he was on the way out, prompting some to ask if this was an outburst meant to provoke Trump: after all Tillerson had nothing to lose at this point.

In a statement issued to The Washington Post, Trump praised both Pompeo and Haspel.

“I am proud to nominate the Director of the Central Intelligence Agency, Mike Pompeo, to be our new Secretary of State,” Trump said. “Mike graduated first in his class at West Point, served with distinction in the U.S. Army, and graduated with Honors from Harvard Law School. He went on to serve in the U.S. House of Representatives with a proven record of working across the aisle.”

The President continued, “Gina Haspel, the Deputy Director of the CIA, will be nominated to replace Director Pompeo and she will be the CIA’s first-ever female director, a historic milestone. Mike and Gina have worked together for more than a year, and have developed a great mutual respect.”

Trump also had words of praise for Tillerson: “Finally, I want to thank Rex Tillerson for his service. A great deal has been accomplished over the last fourteen months, and I wish him and his family well.”

“I am deeply grateful to President Trump for permitting me to serve as Director of the Central Intelligence Agency and for this opportunity to serve as Secretary of State,” Pompeo said in a statement. “His leadership has made America safer and I look forward to representing him and the American people to the rest of the world to further America’s prosperity. Serving alongside the great men and women of the CIA, the most dedicated and talented public servants I have encountered has been one of the great honors of my life.”

Haspel in a statement also said she was excited for her promotion.

After 30 years as an officer of the Central Intelligence Agency, it has been my honor to serve as its Deputy Director alongside Mike Pompeo for the past year,” she said. “I am grateful to President Trump for the opportunity, and humbled by his confidence in me, to be nominated to be the next Director of the Central Intelligence Agency.”

Finally, if it is Trump’s intention to keep crushing the dollar with every incremental announcement, he is succeeding.

Dollar index following Tillerson announcement.

Dollar index following Tillerson announcement.

Update 1:

Mike Pompeo has issued the following brief statement sent to the press, saying he was “grateful” to have worked for the CIA.

I am deeply grateful to President Trump for permitting me to serve as Director of the Central Intelligence Agency and for this opportunity to serve as Secretary of State. His leadership has made America safer and I look forward to representing him and the American people to the rest of the world to further America’s prosperity.

Serving alongside the great men and women of the CIA, the most dedicated and talented public servants I have encountered, has been one of the great honors of my life. I am proud of the work we have done on behalf of America and know that the Agency will continue to thrive under the leadership of Gina Haspel.

If confirmed, I look forward to guiding the world’s finest diplomatic corps in formulating and executing the President’s foreign policy. In my time as Director of the Central Intelligence Agency, I have worked alongside many remarkable Foreign Service officers and Department of State leaders serving here in the United States and on the very edge of freedom. I know I will learn from them and, as President Trump set out in his State of the Union Address, work hard to ensure that ‘our nation will forever be safe and strong and proud and mighty and free.”

Update 2:

Confirming the WaPo’s reporting, a senior administration official told CNN that President Trump asked Tillerson to step aside on Friday. “POTUS thought it was the right time for the transition with the upcoming North Korea talks and various trade negotiations. POTUS asked Tillerson to step aside on Friday.”

CNN also notes that president Trump has wanted Mike Pompeo as his secretary of state for months now, and the White House began planning for him to take this job last fall.

Trump’s anger at Tillerson after it leaked that he called him “a moron” never subsided, and many in the White House saw their differences as irreconcilable.

Tillerson had few if any, allies left in the West Wing. Though Chief of Staff John Kelly was initially on his side when he took over, he eventually grew weary of defending him — especially after the “moron” remark, which Kelly saw as insubordination on Tillerson’s part.

Ultimately, according to sources close to the President, “it was clear Tillerson didn’t support Trump.” They say Tillerson wanted to handle foreign policy his own way, without the President. Trump didn’t feel that Tillerson backed him, sources say.

Update 3:

President Trump tells reporters that he and Tillerson disagreed on Iran, that he made the North Korea decision himself and thinks Tillerson will be “much happier now.” Trump said “I wish Rex Tillerson well… I very much appreciate his commitment and his service and I wish him well. He’s a good man… We got along actually quite well but we disagreed on things.

Trump also said he and the man he’s nominating to replace Rex Tillerson think the same way.

CIA Director Mike Pompeo has “tremendous energy, tremendous intellect,” Trump said. “We’re always on the same wavelength.”

“I am really at a point where we are getting close to having the cabinet and other things that I want,” Trump said.
Trump told reporters moments ago that he and Tillerson “got along,” but they disagreed on key issues, like the Iran nuclear deal.

Meanwhile, according to Steve Goldstein, undersecretary for public diplomacy, said Rex Tillerson wanted to stay. “The Secretary had every intention of staying, because of critical progress made in national security,” Goldstein said. “He will miss his colleagues at the Department of State and the foreign ministers that he’s worked with throughout the world.”

The official added that Tillerson didn’t get to speak with President Trump and doesn’t know why. “The Secretary did not speak to the President and is unaware of the reason,” he said. “He is grateful for the opportunity to serve and believes public service is a noble calling. He wishes secretary-designate Pompeo well.”

Update 4:

Some more details on how Tillerson learned he was fired: A senior White House official has told CNN that President Trump asked Chief of Staff John Kelley to call Rex Tillerson on Friday night.

The official said Kelly told Tillerson that he will be replaced but did not specify the timing. It was Trump’s decision to pull the trigger Tuesday morning, which underscored their fraught relations. “This is how the President wanted to do it,” the official said — a reflection of how the man who became famous saying “you’re fired” actually rarely does it in person.

Steve Goldstein, State Department undersecretary of public affairs, confirmed that Tillerson got a call on Friday night from Kelly with a heads up, but Goldstein did not elaborate. Goldstein insists that Tillerson was notified of the official termination in the tweet this morning.

Update 5:

In an amusing interlude, President Trump was asked if he fired Rex Tillerson because the former Secretary of State called him a “moron” last summer. Trump refused to answer, as the following exchange reveals:

Reporter: Did you fire him because he called you a moron?

Trump: What?

Reporter: Did you fire him because he called you a moron?

Trump: Say it again.

At that point, Trump pivoted to Mike Pompeo.

Update 6:

According to media reports, the Senate Foreign Relations Committee is expected to begin confirmation proceedings for Mike Pompeo in April, according to a statement from committee chairman Bob Corker. Pompeo is currently the Director of the CIA. He was confirmed to that position in January 2017 with a vote of 66 to 32.

Meanwhile, Bob Corker, the chairman of the Senate Foreign Relations Committee, said he hasn’t had a chance to talk to Rex Tillerson today. He said he last spoke to the former Secretary of State last week, when the two discussed North Korea.

“We’ve tried to reach Tillerson,” Corker said. “I haven’t had a chance to talk with him.”

Corker added that he has enjoyed working with Tillerson and has heard “good things” about Mike Pompeo, Trump’s pick to replace Tillerson.

Top Photo | Secretary of State Rex Tillerson listens as President Donald Trump speaks during a cabinet meeting at the White House in Washington. Tillerson is out as secretary of state. President Trump tweeted that he’s naming CIA director Mike Pompeo to replace him, Jan. 10, 2018 . (AP/Evan Vucci)


The post Trump Axes Tillerson Over Iran Deal – Replaces Him With CIA Chief Pompeo appeared first on MintPress News.


Support this site

News Sources

Source Items
John Pilger 402
The Real News 332
Scrutinised Minds 18
Need To Know News 1054
FEE 2207
Marine Le Pen 143
Francois Asselineau 25
Opassande 50
HAX on 5July 220
Henrik Alexandersson 349
Mohamed Omar 189
Professors Blog 10
Arg Blatte Talar 37
Angry Foreigner 15
Fritte Fritzson 11
Teologiska rummet 28
Filosofiska rummet 55
Vetenskapsradion Historia 95
Snedtänkt (Kalle Lind) 154
Les Crises 1259
Richard Falk 74
Ian Sinclair 60
SpinWatch 34
Counter Currents 4140
Kafila 283
Gail Malone 27
Transnational Foundation 221
Rick Falkvinge 78
The Duran 5138
Vanessa Beeley 77
Nina Kouprianova 9
MintPress 3361
Paul Craig Roberts 830
News Junkie Post 42
Nomi Prins 20
Kurt Nimmo 191
Strategic Culture 2378
Sir Ken Robinson 15
Stephan Kinsella 48
Liberty Blitzkrieg 732
Sami Bedouin 60
Consortium News 1831
21 Century Wire 2490
Burning Blogger 253
Stephen Gowans 48
David D. Friedman 119
Anarchist Standard 16
The BRICS Post 1370
Tom Dispatch 328
Levant Report 17
The Saker 2746
The Barnes Review 434
John Friend 316
Psyche Truth 146
Jonathan Cook 122
New Eastern Outlook 2681
School Sucks Project 1088
Giza Death Star 1313
Andrew Gavin Marshall 15
Red Ice Radio 541
GMWatch 1478
Robert Faurisson 119
Espionage History Archive 33
Jay's Analysis 577
Le 4ème singe 81
Jacob Cohen 182
Agora Vox 7625
Cercle Des Volontaires 394
Panamza 1311
Fairewinds 102
Project Censored 555
Spy Culture 297
Conspiracy Archive 56
Crystal Clark 11
Timothy Kelly 332
PINAC 1472
The Conscious Resistance 449
Independent Science News 63
The Anti Media 4333
Positive News 820
Brandon Martinez 30
Steven Chovanec 51
Lionel 236
The Mind renewed 195
Natural Society 2391
Yanis Varoufakis 693
Tragedy & Hope 106
Dr. Tim Ball 53
Web of Debt 116
Porkins Policy Review 291
Conspiracy Watch 174
Eva Bartlett 513
Libyan War Truth 262
DeadLine Live 1889
Kevin Ryan 59
Aaron Franz 157
Traces of Reality 166
Revelations Radio News 109
Dr. Bruce Levine 95
Peter B Collins 1186
Faux Capitalism 203
Dissident Voice 8622
Climate Audit 213
Donna Laframboise 270
Judith Curry 1008
Geneva Business Insider 40
Media Monarchy 1709
Syria Report 70
Human Rights Investigation 85
Intifada (Voice of Palestine) 1685
Down With Tyranny 8850
Laura Wells Solutions 15
Video Rebel's Blog 398
Revisionist Review 485
Aletho News 15840
ضد العولمة 27
Penny for your thoughts 2396
Northerntruthseeker 1836
كساريات 37
Color Revolutions and Geopolitics 27
Stop Nato 4500 Blog 2382 Original Content 5468
Corbett Report 1913
Stop Imperialism 491
Land Destroyer 1036
Webster Tarpley Website 788

Compiled Feeds

Public Lists

Title Visibility
Funny Public