Deep in a report on the relationship between Donald Trump and his Secretary of State Mike Pompeo, the New York Times reports that supporters of the president want him to fire Pompeo over his advice on using military force in Iran.
According to the report, Pompeo -- along with national security adviser John Bolton -- represents the "warhawk" wing of the White House, urging the president to use America's military might on Iran after Trump threw out an agreement with the Middle Eastern country that was orchestrated by President Barack Obama's administration.
In light of the aborted attack on Iran on Thursday night, which the president called off at the last minute, critics claim that Trump has been boxed in by their advice.
“What Pompeo and Bolton have done is drive the president into a corner,” explained Wendy R. Sherman, an ex-State Department official who worked on the Iran negotiations while serving in the Obama administration. “The maximum pressure campaign through the sanctions has only strengthened the hard hard-liners in Iran, just like Pompeo and Bolton are the hard hard-liners in our country.”
The Times reports, "Mr. Pompeo’s military leanings and embrace of hard-line policies, especially on Iran, could lead to conflict with Mr. Trump, who insists on keeping to his campaign promise of withdrawing troops from war zones. That contradiction came to the fore on Thursday night, when Mr. Trump rejected the recommendation by Mr. Pompeo and Mr. Bolton to strike Iran for the downing of an American drone earlier that day."
While Trump has praised Pompeo -- and the Secretary of State has kept his disagreements with the president to himself -- supporters of Trump think the president is being ill-served.
"Mr. Pompeo’s militant stand on Iran has led some prominent Trump supporters to push for his ouster because of what they see as a betrayal of Mr. Trump’s 'America First' isolationism," the Times reports. "On Thursday night, after Mr. Trump called off the strike, Douglas Macgregor, a retired army colonel, told Fox News that Mr. Trump 'needs to get rid of the warmongers. He needs to throw these geniuses that want limited strikes out of the Oval Office.'"
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