New National Security Adviser Is a Respected Military Intellect

HR McMaster will replace Michael Flynn
By John Johnson,  Newser Staff
Posted Feb 20, 2017 2:21 PM CST
Updated Feb 20, 2017 3:08 PM CST
Trump Names General as National Security Adviser
President Donald Trump, right, shakes hands with Army Lt. Gen. H.R. McMaster, left, at Trump's Mar-a-Lago estate in Palm Beach, Fla., Monday.   (AP Photo/Susan Walsh)

President Trump has picked his new national security adviser: Army Lt. Gen. HR McMaster. He is "a man of tremendous talent and tremendous experience," Trump said in announcing his decision Monday in Florida, per Politico. McMaster replaces Michael Flynn, who was asked to resign over his conversations with the Russian ambassador about sanctions before taking office. The Los Angeles Times calls McMaster "one of the military's most prominent intellectuals." Some related coverage:

  • A blogger at Foreign Policy who knows McMaster calls him "smart, energetic, and tough," and he maintains that McMaster has written one of the best books on the Vietnam War: Dereliction of Duty: Johnson, McNamara, the Joint Chiefs of Staff, and the Lies That Led to Vietnam.
  • McMaster talks about life in the military in this 2014 interview with the Ledger-Enquirer of Columbus, Ga. Among the quotes: "Some people think, hey, you’re in the military and everything is super-hierarchical and you’re in an environment that is intolerable of criticism and people don’t want frank assessments. I think the opposite is the case. In the Army, because the stakes are so high—right?—you can’t just be a yes-man and say, 'Great idea, boss!' if you don’t believe it—right?—because lives are at stake." Read it in full here.
  • The New York Times says McMaster's thinking on counterterrorism served as the basis for Gen. David Petraeus' strategy that shifted momentum toward the US against insurgents in Iraq.
  • Last year, McMaster warned that the Army needed to stop shrinking, notes in its five-things-to-know feature on the general.
  • McMaster participated in the Battle of 73 Eastern during Desert Storm in which US troops were outnumbered but still prevailed because Iraqi soldiers were using outdated equipment. He wrote about the battle and its lessons at the Strategy Bridge.
(Read more national security adviser stories.)

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