Less than 24 hours after United States Secretary of State, Rex Tillerson visited President Buhari at the Presidential villa in Abuja, on the final leg of his African tour, he has been sacked by President Donald Trump.
CIA Director Mike Pompeo will be replacing the former Exxon Mobil chief executive, as President Donald Trump also picked deputy CIA Director Gina Haspel to run the spy agency.
Announcing Rex Tillerson’s sack on Twitter, President Donald Trump wrote;
Mike Pompeo, Director of the CIA, will become our new Secretary of State. He will do a fantastic job! Thank you to Rex Tillerson for his service! Gina Haspel will become the new Director of the CIA, and the first woman so chosen. Congratulations to all!
CNBC reported that since Tillerson took the post in February 2017, mixed messages repeatedly came out of the White House and a State Department with diminishing relevance. The intramural clashes between the president and secretary of State came amid major international crises, including a potential nuclear showdown with North Korea.
His push to slash “inefficiencies” in the State Department and seeming disinterest in working closely with longtime staff were even more damaging. Under Tillerson’s watch, 60 percent of State’s top-ranking career diplomats resigned and new applications to join the foreign service fell by half, according to a November count by the American Foreign Service Association.
This hollowing-out of the foreign service, combined with Tillerson’s inability to appoint people to vital positions like ambassador to South Korea, delayed American responses to major crises and weakened the State Department for a “generation,” according to George Washington University’s Elizabeth Saunders.
Many expected Tillerson to be one of the “adults in the room,” helping Secretary of Defense James Mattis rein in some of Trump’s wildest 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.