Trump backs McMaster



President Trump gave H.R. McMaster a vote of confidence after the national security adviser’s rivals seized on a letter McMaster sent to his Obama predecessor Susan Rice giving her continued access to classified information.

McMaster’s letter, which his supporters said was routine, was apparently leaked to imply that the Army lieutenant general was helping Trump’s enemies. McMaster’s feud with other powerful camps inside the White House has been well-documented, and a recent spate of firings by McMaster appears to have ratcheted up tensions. But Trump issued a statement late Friday supporting McMaster.

“General McMaster and I are working very well together,” the statement read. “He is a good man and very pro-Israel. I am grateful for the work he continues to do serving our country.”

McMaster already had been in the spotlight for the series of firings he’s ordered on the National Security Council. Most recently, he ousted Ezra Cohen-Watnick, the senior director for intelligence at the National Security Council who had been viewed as a Trump loyalist.

But Circa first reported Thursday that McMaster sent a letter giving Rice access to classified material, weeks after her alleged role was disclosed in ‘unmasking’ identities of Trump associates in intelligence reports.

Fox News was told by National Security Council sources, however, that the letter was a pro forma document similar to those sent to every living former national security adviser and former president – and that he was required to send it.

The NSC also told Fox News that extending Rice’s security clearance doesn’t mean she gets to look at any classified information. It just means that she can be called back in (if necessary) to have conversations about classified information.

But the fact he sent the letter to Rice – given the controversy surrounding her and the “unmasking” of members of the Trump campaign, transition and administration in intelligence documents – was not viewed favorably by members of the administration who aren’t particular fans of McMaster.

Cohen-Watnick, who was brought into the NSC by former national security adviser Mike Flynn, incidentally was at the center of the controversy over House intelligence committee chairman Rep. Devin Nunes’s visit to the White House in March to look at intelligence reports about incidental surveillance of Trump officials during the presidential campaign.

His dismissal follows other recent changes at the NSC.

It was revealed on Wednesday in news reports that Rich Higgins, who served as director for strategic planning at the NSC, was fired July 21. Higgins had been an ally of senior White House adviser Steve Bannon.

And last week, Derek Harvey, a top Middle East adviser who served as special assistant to the president and senior director for the Middle East on the National Security Council, was also relieved of his duties.

The changes at the NSC come as the White House has seen a number of other high-profile staff changes: chief of staff Reince Priebus resigned last week and was replaced by John Kelly; press secretary Sean Spicer resigned and was replaced by Sarah Sanders; and newly tapped communications director Anthony Scaramucci was forced out after just 11 days on the job.

Fox News’ John Roberts, Alex Pappas and Serafin Gomez contributed to this report.

August 5, 2017 | 7 Comments » | 655 views

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7 Comments / 7 Comments

  1. McMaster has shown himself to be anti-Israel not pro Israel. Why is Trump defending him with false news?

  2. Speaks more about Trump than McMaster……As each day passes I am less impressed with Trump….. His judgement seems to be shallow at best and contradictory. He now has a military triumvirate controlling him and the country.. with apparently his consent…. Mattis, McMaster and now Kelly. They have colluded in order to censor all information the POTUS receives and has hin pretty well shackled. The game is elections 2018 getting a democrat congress then impeachment. Trump with Mueller breathing down his neck and never Trump RINOS will prove his undoing and he seems unable and incapable to be able to fight back. Most disturbing he is embracing his enemies within that he choose…..catch 22? It was McCain who recommended McMasters to Trump and he picked him? Hard to believe he is so stupid…..Kelly brought his asst from Homeland Security… She is a Trump hater and supporter of open borders and she is deputy Chief of Staff now. Rumor has it that the Triumvirate has an agreement that one of them will always be available to monitor Trump. Is this a case of the tail wagging the dog?

  3. I too am simply blown away at how such an astute and successful businessman could be so stupid/naive/ignorant about such critical hires.
    McMaster, Tillerson, Mueller, etc.
    The singular solace I can come up with is that at least the Clintons aren’t running the show, but if these and other hires signal Trump’s bona fides as pro-Israel, the term has lost all meaning.
    Well, at least we have a strong Prime Minister……….oh..wait…

  4. @ yamit82: Yamit, I agree. However; allow me to play devil’s advocate, just for the mental exercise.
    What if Trump read your post and replied that he is sorry, but at the present time he can not fire McMaster, despite the fact that doing so is a major priority. The problem is replacing him, as the RINO Senators and Congressmen/women are threatening to revolt and to make matters worse Tillerson and Mattis are threatening to resign. Trump goes on to explain that he will need to have excellent replacements for all three, which will pass confirmation, not easy. Trump states he wants all three out, but in the meantime I have to work with these people on issues, such as North Korea, a priority. He begs for patience on this one.
    It may seem far fetched, but, I will tell you Yamit, if I am wrong, Trump is surely finished. The Evangelical Christians will be on phone to their senators and congressmen and Trumps approval numbers will take a nose dive from 30 ish to less than half that. I predict 13% approval and falling.

  5. I also find it very confusing that Trump has hired staffers that defy his policies. Yes, we hear that the shadow govt is fighting Trump on everything, and that getting confirmation is hard, but he has to do something about Tillerson and McMaster, who are really sabotaging everything Trump says he stands for. These guys are channeling Obama and because they are puppets and not really him, they get away with doing worse. All Obama’s influence on the presidency must be obliterated or the nation will sink into failure.

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