Rex Tillerson Fired from Secretary of State
13 March 2018 09:09
Secretary of State Rex Tillerson was fired by President Donald Trump, according to White House officials’ statements on Tuesday morning. He was in office for a little over a year, one of the shortest tenures in modern history — and it was not, experts say, a distinguished one.
Tillerson just returned from a trip abroad to Chad and Nigeria, before cutting his trip short to refocus on North Korea.
Trump’s suprise announcement took place less than four hours after Tillerson’s flight landed.
“I want to thank Rex Tillerson for his service,” Trump said briefly in a statement. “A great deal has been accomplished over the last fourteen months, and I wish him and his family well.”
The White House said that Trump wanted a fresh approach to his administration’s diplomatic efforts, and wanted to have his team in place in time for negotiations with North Korea.
Trump also announced that Deputy Director of the CIA Gina Haspel take Pompeo’s place as Director of the CIA, the first woman to be appointed to the job.
"I think he really will go down as one of the worst secretaries of State we've had," Eliot Cohen, counselor to the State Department under President George W. Bush, told Axios’ Jonathan Swan. “He will go down as the worst Secretary of State in history,” tweeted Ilan Goldenberg, an Obama-era State Department official.
Tillerson was expected by many to be one of the “adults in the room,” helping Secretary of Defense James Mattis rein in some of Trump’s most wild ideas. His attempts to play that role backfired — his ham-handed attempts to manage Trump alienated the president, who has reportedly complained about his “totally establishment” views on foreign policy.