On Thursday, Secretary of Defense James Mattis resigned his post, citing differences with President Donald Trump after the president abruptly announced the withdrawal of American troops from Syria.

The president was widely criticized for a move that alienated allies and frightened and disappointed members of his national security team.

Trump cut into his critics Friday morning by broadcasting his alleged toughness on China and Russia —even as both his Republican allies in Congress and top officials condemned the Syria withdrawal.

"There has never been a president who has been tougher (but fair) on China or Russia - Never, just look at the facts. The Fake News tries so hard to paint the opposite picture," the president said.

He followed up with a quote from retired brigadier general and novelist Anthony Tata, who appeared Friday morning on Fox and Friends.

"General Anthony Tata, author, “Dark Winter.” I think the President is making the exact right move in Syria. All the geniuses who are protesting the withdrawal of troops from Syria are the same geniuses who cooked the books on ISIS intelligence and gave rise to ISIS.”

Tata previously claimed CIA Director John Brennan was "clear and present danger" to the US and called Brennan a "communist." He frequently appears on Fox News, and was one of the few commentators who supported the president's decision to send US troops to the Southwest border.

Watch Tata on Fox & Friends.