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Wednesday, March 14, 2018

Good bye, Rex Tillerson


The most recent dismissal reaffirms that under president Donald Trump, the cabinet has become one of the most convulsive in the history of the United States, as its replacement rate is 43% and there is no month in which a high position does not fall. Tillerson is being punished for not seeing eye to eye with the most powerful man on Earth.

Donald Trump opened a new crisis today in his turbulent cabinet. A few days after agreeing to meet face to face with the North Korean leader, Kim Jong-un, the US president announced the sudden dismissal of his secretary of state, Rex Tillerson, and his replacement by the director of the CIA, Mike Pompeo.

The head of the CIA will be occupied in turn by Gina Haspel, who supervised the torture practiced in the secret jail of Thailand. Both, the Pompeo and Haspel positions require confirmation from the Senate. With the departure of Tillerson, whose term has been unusually brief for a Secretary of State, another of the heavyweights of the moderate sector falls (last week was the economic adviser, Gary Cohn). According to El País, the dismissal of Tillerson had no contemplations. It was pure Trump. Just a tweet to let everyone know. The State Department itself, in an unusual statement signed by Deputy Secretary Steve Goldstein, expressed that Tillerson "had not spoken to the president that morning and did not know the reason" for the dismissal. The secretary had every intention of remaining due to the tangible progress made in critical matters of national security”, the note remarks. Two hours later, Goldstein was also fired.

The blow has a strategic significance. After the first year of office, the president faces key elections in November. Therefore, given the foreseeable swings, Trump wants to strengthen the Republican hard wing and get rid of all those who, like Cohn and Tillerson, stop his narrative. This realignment also affects an external agenda that Trump treats as a matter of internal politics. The tariff war has begun, the Free Trade Agreement with North America is on the line, the pact with Iran must be renewed in a matter of weeks and, in an unexpected turn, the president has accepted a face to face with the North Korean despot.

A dialogue of high voltage that can end in a resounding failure and redouble, to the horror of the world, the nuclear pulse. Faced with this explosive horizon, Trump has allowed himself to be guided by his instincts and has opted for those who are most faithful and close to him. Among them, Mike Pompeo. "With Tillerson, he disagreed on some things, such as the agreement with Iran, whereas Pompeo and I have similar thought processes," Trump told reporters today. So much for that phrase of: keep your enemies close. Inside his country, the US president wants nothing more than allies or pets.