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Politics Trump's firing of Tillerson came after months of disagreements

08:38  14 march  2018
08:38  14 march  2018 Source:   cbsnews.com

The Latest: Officials say White House fired Tillerson aide

  The Latest: Officials say White House fired Tillerson aide <p>Two U.S. officials say the White House has fired one of Rex Tillerson's top aides after he contradicted the official account of the secretary of state's dismissal by President Donald Trump.</p>The officials said Steve Goldstein, the undersecretary of state for public diplomacy and public affairs, was informed of the move shortly after he released a statement in his name saying that Tillerson was "unaware of the reason" for his termination. Goldstein had also told reporters that Tillerson learned of his firing Tuesday morning from Trump's tweet announcing he was nominating CIA chief Mike Pompeo to lead the State Department.

Rex Tillerson wearing a suit and tie: Outgoing U.S. Secretary of State Rex Tillerson makes a statement on his departure from the State Department on Tue., March 13, 2018, at the State Department in Washington, D.C. President Trump has nominated CIA Director Mike Pompeo to replace Tillerson to be the next secretary of state. © Provided by CBS Interactive Inc. Outgoing U.S. Secretary of State Rex Tillerson makes a statement on his departure from the State Department on Tue., March 13, 2018, at the State Department in Washington, D.C. President Trump has nominated CIA Director Mike Pompeo to replace Tillerson to be the next secretary of state.

WASHINGTON -- President Trump was not at all pleased with Secretary of State Rex Tillerson -- so he fired him. Mr. Trump announced Tuesday he has chosen CIA Director Mike Pompeo to replace him and picked Pompeo's deputy, Gina Haspel, to succeed him.

It's by far the biggest Trump administration shakeup yet. A shaken Tillerson relinquished control of the State Department.

Longtime diplomat: Tillerson's public firing makes my head explode

  Longtime diplomat: Tillerson's public firing makes my head explode Donald Trump's firing of Secretary of State Rex Tillerson on Twitter was unprecedented but also inevitable given their policy differences, Aaron David Miller says.Tuesday's public firing of Secretary of State Rex Tillerson, by presidential tweet no less, is a bizarre and veritable head-exploder.

"I received a call today from the president of the United States a little after noontime from Air Force One," Tillerson said.

He had been warned in an early Saturday morning phone call from White House chief of staff John Kelly that his job was in jeopardy.

Tillerson -- who had been traveling in Africa -- cut short his trip.

Hours after landing in Washington, Tillerson learned Tuesday he'd been fired and would be replaced by Pompeo.

Mr. Trump, who often says he likes different points of view, said he fired America's top diplomat because they disagreed on foreign policy.

"I actually got along well with Rex, but really it was a different mindset, it was a different thinking," Mr. Trump said.

The president said they clashed over the Iran nuclear deal. He wants to tear up the international agreement while Tillerson cautioned that breaking America's commitment could make it harder to reach a deal with North Korea.

Trump ordered Tillerson to eat salad during dinner in China: report

  Trump ordered Tillerson to eat salad during dinner in China: report President Trump ordered Secretary of State Rex Tillerson to eat a salad served to U.S. diplomats during a trip to China last year, The Wall Street Journal reported Tuesday.The Chinese leaders had reportedly included Caesar salad on the menu for a dinner wi th Trump, Tillerson and other top U.S. officials in November. The event was held in China's Great Hall of the People during Trump's tour of Asia.Trump grew worried that the Chinese officials might be offended if the U.S. leaders didn't eat the salad, the Journal reported."Rex, eat the salad," Trump told his top diplomat, according to the newspaper.

On Sunday's "Face the Nation," Pompeo skirted questions about whether Tillerson would lead those talks.

"This is a level of discussion, the president is going to drive this effort, this negotiation, but it will take a team to build out the picture," Pompeo said.

Timeline of Rex Tillerson as Secretary of State

The president also had rejected Tillerson's advice to stick with U.S. commitments to the Paris climate change accord and an Asia-Pacific free trade deal. He also overruled Tillerson and instead took Jared Kushner's advice to relocate the U.S. embassy in Israel to Jerusalem this year.

Tillerson told "60 Minutes" last month that he had no plans to resign and dismissed reports -- but did not deny -- that he called Mr. Trump a "moron" in a private meeting.

"I'm not going to dignify the question," Tillerson said when pressed on the issue. "We've got so many bigger issues that we could be talking about."

Tillerson fails to thank Trump after firing

  Tillerson fails to thank Trump after firing Secretary of State Rex Tillerson thanked the American people, his State Department staff and the nation's extensive network of diplomats in his farewell statement on Tuesday. One person he did not thank: President Donald Trump, the man who nominated him for the job but abruptly told the world of his ouster in a tweet on Tuesday morning.The only mention of Trump came at the top of the statement when Tillerson mentioned that the President had called him at "a little after noontime from Air Force One" to talk about his ouster.

It was Tillerson's experience as the globetrotting CEO of energy giant Exxon Mobil that originally convinced Mr. Trump to appoint him. Now he plans to retire back to his ranch in Texas.

"I'll now return to private life as a private citizen, as a proud American, proud of the opportunity I've had to serve my country," he said.

It's not clear when Pompeo will begin in his new role. One of his first major decisions will be whether to withdraw from the Iran nuclear deal in May.

Secretary of State Rex Tillerson walks down a hallway after speaking at a news conference at the State Department in Washington, Tuesday, March 13, 2018. President Donald Trump fired Tillerson and said he would nominate CIA Director Mike Pompeo to replace him, in a major staff reshuffle just as Trump dives into high-stakes talks with North Korea.: Trump Tillerson © Andrew Harnik / AP Trump Tillerson

Tillerson urges 'kindness' in farewell remarks at State .
Secretary of State Rex Tillerson on Thursday praised the work of the agency's employees and urged kindness in the face of what he called "a very mean-spirited town." Speaking to department personnel in what are likely to be his last remarks as the nation's chief diplomat, Tillerson emphasized values of respect and dignity, and called for employees to perform "one act of kindness" each day. "This can Speaking to department personnel in what are likely to be his last remarks as the nation's chief diplomat, Tillerson emphasized values of respect and dignity, and called for employees to perform "one act of kindness" each day.

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