After 14 months of private tensions and public disputes, President Trump on Tuesday ousted his secretary of State, replacing Rex Tillerson with CIA Director Mike Pompeo in a major shake-up of his national security and foreign policy team....
"The Secretary did not speak to the President and is unaware of the reason" he was sacked, said Steve Goldstein, under secretary of state for public diplomacy and Public Affairs in a statement to ABC News.
Haspel, who has extensive overseas experience, briefly ran a secret CIA prison where terror suspects Abu Zubayadah and Abd al Rahim al-Nashiri were waterboarded in 2002, according to current and former US intelligence officials who spoke to The Associated Press on condition of anonymity.
The State Department has confirmed the fact.
But Trump fired him even as he was returning to the capital, and Tillerson reportedly learned of it from Twitter, where the President announced his successor.
Trump tapped the CIA's deputy director, Gina Haspel, to replace Pompeo at the intelligence agency.
Tillerson had just returned from a shortened trip to Africa hours before Mr. Trump's announcement. Tillerson has urged Trump to stay in the landmark nuclear disarmament deal, but the president has vowed to withdraw by mid-May if it is not renegotiated. Trump tweeted at 8:44 a.m. EST.
"With Mike, Mike Pompeo, we have a very similar thought process".
When did Rex Tillerson know?
The state department then released an extraordinary statement saying, "The Secretary did not speak to the President and is unaware of the reason (he was fired), but he is grateful for the opportunity to serve, and still believes strongly that public service is a noble calling". In February 2017, for example, The Washington Post's Carol Morello and Anne Gearan reported that "the Trump administration in its first month has largely benched the State Department from its long-standing role as the preeminent voice of USA foreign policy, curtailing public engagement and official travel and relegating Secretary of State Rex Tillerson to a mostly offstage role".
Much like his quick choice to take the meeting with Kim Jong-Un, Trump chose to remove Tillerson from his Cabinet post by himself, according to the AP.
While some intelligence officers have said that Pompeo tends to tell Trump what he wants to hear rather than giving him their assessments, others say they have been impressed by his intellect, willingness to listen and advocacy of more robust covert operations. "I wish him all the best in his future endeavors".
Later, her name was on the order to carry out the destruction of videotapes of the interrogation, the New York Times reported, although the agency said her superior, Jose Rodriguez, head of the clandestine service, had made the decision.
Tillerson, like most in the administration, seemed to be blindsided by Trump's acceptance of a meeting with the North Korean dictator.
But the White House distanced itself from those remarks, and a few days later, Mr Tillerson himself backed off. Top economic adviser Gary Cohn announced his resignation last week, not long after communications director Hope Hicks and staff secretary Rob Porter both departed near the start of Trump's second year in office. "Gina. who I've worked very closely [with], will be director of CIA", Trump told reporters.