Trump fired Secretary of Defense for being disloyal, supporting diversity and wanting to have alleged war criminals disciplined, suggests recently released memo

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Former President Donald Trump reportedly fired former defense minister Mark Esper based on advice from the former college football quarterback he was tasked with clearing disloyal officials from his administration, who said Mr Esper deserved to lose his job because he opposed the use of military force against protesters.

Mr Trump then firedMinister of Defense Mark Esper on November 9, 2020 – just two days after most news organizations recognized the president Joe Biden as the winner of the 2020 presidential election – and replaced him with Christopher Miller, head of the National Counterterrorism Center.

At the time, no reason was given for Esper’s resignation, but the West Point academic had clashed with the president on a number of issues, including the renaming of military bases that had been renamed generals serving on the losing side of the American Civil War and whether to use military force. against racial protesters.

Although Trump only fired Esper after it became clear he had lost the election, plans to replace him had already been formulated weeks in advance, according to a recently published memorandum written by White House Chief of Staff John McEntee.

The memorandum shows that Trump was ready to fire Esper long before the Americans went to the polls to decide whether Trump would get a second term as president, and was received and published by ABC News correspondent Jonathan Karl during the reporting for his president. forthcoming book, Betrayal: The Final Act of the Trump Show.

According to Karl, the memorandum was written by McEntee, a former football quarterback at the University of Connecticut who previously served as Trump’s personal aide, and was presented to the president on October 19.

McEntee, who placed Trump in charge of the White House staffing office with instructions to remove any designated executive branch who could be disloyal to him personally, argued that the president should remove Mr Esper from office based on a litany of alleged acts of disloyalty to Trump .

Among the alleged wrongdoings documented by McEntee were the Secretary of Defense’s opposition to Trump’s desire to have active military forces to “set up riots just outside the White House in the nation’s capital” and his decision to approve a recommendation by Army officials to promote Lieutenant Colonel Alexander Vindman, one of the witnesses who testified in Parliamentary Intelligence Committee hearings leading to Trump’s first trial.

Esper also incurred the anger of the former president’s husband for approving a “diversity and inclusion” board at the Department of Defense and failing to stop the department’s five armed services from taking similar initiatives to increase the recruitment of non-white people, as well as for his desire to allow the Navy to discipline ex-Seal Eddie Gallagher, an alleged war criminal who had expressed his support for Trump on Fox News.

McEntee recommended that Trump accept Esper’s resignation on November 4 and temporarily replace him with Miller before nominating a “capable” Secretary of Defense, such as then-National Security Adviser Robert O’Brien.