Oh, I was hoping James Mattis could survive the on-going purge of grownups within the Donald J. Trump administration.
It appears the hope is fading.
Mattis is the defense secretary, a retired U.S. Marine Corps general, a decorated combat veteran, a seriously competent military expert and a man known to be a bona fide check on the president’s lack of knowledge of damn near anything involving foreign/military policy.
He once was one of Trump’s favorites. He’s no longer among those folks, according to The New York Times.
As the Times reports: In the second year of his presidency, Mr. Trump has largely tuned out his national security aides as he feels more confident as commander in chief, the officials said. Facing what is likely to be a heated re-election fight once the 2018 midterms are over, aides said Mr. Trump was pondering whether he wanted someone running the Pentagon who would be more vocally supportive than Mr. Mattis, who is vehemently protective of the American military against perceptions it could be used for political purposes.
Mattis has become a subject of some chatter of late, given the release of Bob Woodward’s new book, “Fear.” Mattis reportedly has actually explained to Trump that U.S. troops are stationed in South Korea to “protect us against World War III.” Trump supposedly asked out loud just why in the world do we have those troops on duty in South Korea.
Mattis reportedly has said the president has the attention span of a fifth- or sixth-grader.
Ah, yes. The grownup speaks a version of the truth about service within an administration run by a man who once claimed to “know about ISIS than the generals.” Actually, he doesn’t … know anything, let alone “more about ISIS.”
There’s this from the Times as well: Mr. Mattis himself is becoming weary, some aides said, of the amount of time spent pushing back against what Defense Department officials think are capricious whims of an erratic president.
This, according to the president, is how a “fine-tuned machine” functions.
Donald Trump is delusional. To the max!