Retired admiral slams Trump administration for incompetence over Iran crisis
President Donald J. Trump (DoD Photo by U.S. Army Sgt. James K. McCann)

On Monday's edition of CNN's "The Lead," retired Adm. James Stavridis broke down a key reason President Donald Trump's national security team is incapable of protecting America: The high turnover prevents the formation of a coherent strategy.


"We have heard a lot from President Trump and Secretary Pompeo about the U.S. being safer, and the Americans being safer today, and as a long term claim, we will see, and who knows if we are with Suleimani gone, because he was a dangerous guy, but with the troops in the Middle East now, was it safer today or before Suleimani was killed, and just speaking today in terms of the Americans?" asked anchor Jake Tapper.

"It was safer before Suleimani was killed," said Stavridis. "And the way to look at it is the difference of something tactical and something strategic. This a tactical move that takes a dangerous chess piece off of the board, but we need a strategy like you do in a chess match, which by the way is a Persian game, to think about the longer term, and how can we leverage the fact that Suleimani is gone, and with private communications and we have to be better at launching the ideas. We are very good at launching missiles."

"Is the current leadership around President Trump strategic?" asked Tapper.

"I don't feel that, and part of it is because of the turmoil and the change," said Stavridis. "We are on the fourth national security adviser, on the second CIA, on the second State Department in the course of three years. So there has been no time to develop strategy and think. I think that the closest to the strategic document out of this administration was [former National Security Adviser] H. R. McMaster's national security strategy coming out two years ago, and that is a pretty good document. From all I can see, that is not the course that this ship is being steered on."

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