'A Good Man.' Donald Trump Defends National Security Adviser Amid Criticism

Posted August 06, 2017

His departure was the latest in a string of exits from the NSC staff under McMaster, who has reportedly sough to purge appointees of Trump's former national security adviser Michael Flynn. The Washington Free Beacon quotes White House sources who say McMaster has been targeting Trump "loyalists" who have been clashing with "career government staffers and holdovers from the Obama administration".

U.S. President Donald Trump's doubts about the war in Afghanistan has led to a delay in completing a new U.S. strategy in South Asia, skepticism that included a suggestion that the U.S. military commander in the region be fired, U.S. officials said on Wednesday.

Senior Israeli defense officials told Haaretz on Saturday that the allegations against McMaster concerning Israel are false and baseless. President Barack Obama's final national security adviser has always been a target of right-wing media and conservatives in Congress. Trump wants to get us out of Syria - McMaster wants to go in.

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In a volley of attacks from right-wing media, McMaster has been accused of being anti-Israel, having a short temper and collaborating with Obama-era officials. And even that, it works out, wasn't sufficient for McMaster. During a July 19 meeting in the White House Situation Room, Trump demanded that his top national security aides provide more information on what one official called "the end-state" in a country where the United States has spent 16 years fighting against the Taliban with no end in sight.

It said McMaster "has determined that, at this time, a different set of experiences is best-suited to carrying that work forward".

According to Lake, documents showing that Rice made the unmasking requests were uncovered by the NSC's former senior director for intelligence, Ezra Cohen-Watnick, who was sacked by McMaster on Wednesday. As far as the anti-McMaster effort's chances, there had been reports that Trump was thinking about pulling McMaster from the NSC to put him in charge of the war in Afghanistan, but on Friday night, in a rare, clearly concerted effort for this White House, both the president and Kushner released statements expressing their support for McMaster.

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In classified briefings, Trump would frequently flit between subjects. But McMaster has faced accusations he is anti-Israel due to his support of the Iran nuclear deal and reports that he refers to Israel as "the occupying power".

It was revealed on Wednesday in news reports that Rich Higgins, who served as director for strategic planning at the NSC, was sacked July 21.

A day after news of Cohen-Watnick's dismal broke, the Daily Caller ran an "exclusive" that cited unnamed former senior NSC officials who claimed, "Everything the president wants to do, McMaster opposes".

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Butowsky said that Wheeler complained to him that he was misquoted, but that he has emails showing him approving the quotes. The AP reports that White House spokeswoman Sarah Huckabee Sanders addressed the issue today at a White House briefing.