Quantcast
Connect with us

Top US diplomat for Europe resigns, cites personal, professional reasons

Published

on

The top U.S. diplomat for European affairs, Wess Mitchell, has resigned, according to his resignation letter seen by Reuters on Tuesday at a time of strains in the trans-Atlantic relationship over U.S. President Donald Trump’s policies.

In the letter to U.S. Secretary of State Mike Pompeo dated Jan. 4, Mitchell said he felt he had completed his goals for the post and wanted to spend more time with his young family.

ADVERTISEMENT

He will leave the post on Feb. 15, according to the State Department.

There were no obvious signs that Mitchell, a former policy analyst on central and eastern Europe, was resigning out of protest against Trump administration policies.

Mitchell was brought on board by former Secretary of State Rex Tillerson in 2017 as Trump threatened to withdraw the United States from the NATO military alliance and Washington accused Moscow of meddling in the 2016 U.S. presidential campaign.

The trans-Atlantic relationship has been further strained by Trump’s decisions to impose U.S. tariffs on European steel and aluminum, pull out of the Iran nuclear deal and global climate pact, and recently to withdraw troops from Syria.

ADVERTISEMENT

Ties with Germany have been strained over Trump’s sharp criticism of German Chancellor Angela Merkel’s migration policies and support for a Baltic Sea gas pipeline with Russia. He has also lashed out at French President Emmanuel Macron for his “low approval rating,” France’s near defeat to Germany in two world wars and accused Paris of unfair trade practices over wine.

Pompeo said on Twitter that Mitchell had done “an outstanding job as Assistant Secretary.”

“I have valued his counsel and wisdom as he has led our European team in this administration. I wish him and his wife Elizabeth, who is also a committed public servant, much happiness with their two young children,” Pompeo tweeted.

ADVERTISEMENT

In his resignation letter, Mitchell said he had helped to craft the administration’s European strategy and reorganize the European bureau at the State Department.

He said he was proud of diplomatic efforts in sustaining transatlantic unity on sanctions against Russia, securing the release of American pastor Andrew Brunson from Turkey, and U.S. support for resolving a dispute between Greece and Macedonia over the former Yugoslav republic’s name.

“I am proud of what we have accomplished in creating and beginning to implement the Europe Integrated Strategy in support of the National Security Strategy and National Defense Strategy,” he wrote. “The emphasis that these strategies place on the need to prepare our country and the nations of the West for sustained competition with big-power rivals is both urgently necessary and long overdue,” he added.

ADVERTISEMENT

Reporting by Lesley Wroughton; Editing by Susan Thomas and James Dalgleish

Enjoy this piece?

… then let us make a small request. Like you, we here at Raw Story believe in the power of progressive journalism — and we’re investing in investigative reporting as other publications give it the ax. Raw Story readers power David Cay Johnston’s DCReport, which we've expanded to keep watch in Washington. We’ve exposed billionaire tax evasion and uncovered White House efforts to poison our water. We’ve revealed financial scams that prey on veterans, and legal efforts to harm workers exploited by abusive bosses. We’ve launched a weekly podcast, “We’ve Got Issues,” focused on issues, not tweets. And unlike other news outlets, we’ve decided to make our original content free. But we need your support to do what we do.

Raw Story is independent. You won’t find mainstream media bias here. We’re not part of a conglomerate, or a project of venture capital bros. From unflinching coverage of racism, to revealing efforts to erode our rights, Raw Story will continue to expose hypocrisy and harm. Unhinged from billionaires and corporate overlords, we fight to ensure no one is forgotten.

We need your support to keep producing quality journalism and deepen our investigative reporting. Every reader contribution, whatever the amount, makes a tremendous difference. Invest with us in the future. Make a one-time contribution to Raw Story Investigates, or click here to become a subscriber. Thank you. Click to donate by check.

Enjoy this piece?

… then let us make a small request. Like you, we here at Raw Story believe in the power of progressive journalism — and we’re investing in investigative reporting as other publications give it the ax. Raw Story readers power David Cay Johnston’s DCReport, which we've expanded to keep watch in Washington. We’ve exposed billionaire tax evasion and uncovered White House efforts to poison our water. We’ve revealed financial scams that prey on veterans, and efforts to harm workers exploited by abusive bosses. We’ve launched a weekly podcast, “We’ve Got Issues,” focused on issues, not tweets. Unlike other news sites, we’ve decided to make our original content free. But we need your support to do what we do.

Raw Story is independent. You won’t find mainstream media bias here. We’re not part of a conglomerate, or a project of venture capital bros. From unflinching coverage of racism, to revealing efforts to erode our rights, Raw Story will continue to expose hypocrisy and harm. Unhinged from corporate overlords, we fight to ensure no one is forgotten.

We need your support to keep producing quality journalism and deepen our investigative reporting. Every reader contribution, whatever the amount, makes a tremendous difference. Invest with us in the future. Make a one-time contribution to Raw Story Investigates, or click here to become a subscriber. Thank you.



Report typos and corrections to: [email protected]. Send news tips to: [email protected].
READ COMMENTS - JOIN THE DISCUSSION
Continue Reading

Facebook

Persecuted Christians eye long-sought freedom in Sudan

Published

on

Sudan's Christians suffered decades of persecution under the regime of Islamist general Omar al-Bashir. Now they hope his downfall will give the religious freedom they have long prayed for.

Deep within the maze of dusty alleys that honeycomb Omdurman, Khartoum's sprawling twin city, Yousef Zamgila's church is not visible from the street.

It is hidden in the courtyard of a friend's home and consists of a few iron benches, a pulpit and crosses hastily painted on pillars holding a corrugated roof.

"The previous centre got destroyed because we didn't have the right papers. They always refused... So we use the land of our neighbours," says the Lutheran reverend.

Continue Reading

Breaking Banner

Trump is ‘a bottomless pit of emotional need’ with a ‘desperate’ desire for friends: NYT’s Charles Blow

Published

on

New York Times editorial writer Charles Blow called out the president in his Sunday editorial for always associating the country with himself.

The byproduct of narcissism is that everything surrounds the narcissist. Such is the case with President Donald Trump's latest series of tweets talking about "My Stock Market" and quoting a fan referring to him as the second coming of Christ.

Continue Reading
 

Breaking Banner

‘Disconnected from reality’: NY Times editor ridicules Trump for being a ‘farce’ of a president

Published

on

New York Times editorial board member, Michelle Cottle, released a scathing op-ed highlighting the president's tendency to give oxygen to his adversaries that no one else would be paying attention to otherwise.

In a piece relating the White House to a "three-ring" circus, Cottle called the president a "farce" for his new war with Anthony Scaramucci.

As the president tweeted, no one had heard of Scaramucci until Trump hired him and former chief-of-staff John Kelly fired him after only 11 days.

Continue Reading
 
 

Thank you for whitelisting Raw Story!

As a special thank you, from now until August 31st, we're offering you a discounted rate of $5.99/month to subscribe and get ad-free access. We're honored to have you as a reader. Thank you. :) —Elias, Membership Coordinator
HELP US UNCOVER CORRUPTION!
close-link
close-image