Steve Bannon removed from National Security Council

07 April, 2017, 10:06 | Author: Leticia Walters

Until Wednesday, Bannon had been able to resist the changes, which sources said were part of a plan by McMaster to consolidate his authority and realign the NSC.

While opponents of the administration construed Bannon's removal from the NSC's principals committee as a setback, a White House official told Bloomberg that his removal from the committee was not a demotion.

"Today's decision to remove Steve Bannon from the National Security Council is a huge victory for democracy and a strong step toward depoliticizing our national security", said Murphy.

"General McMaster has returned the NSC to its proper function", said Bannon in a statement to The Wall Street Journal, also saying that he was brought on to ensure that the moves made by Barack Obama's NatSec Adviser, Susan Rice, to "operationalize" the NSC, were reversed.

H.R. McMaster has since taken over Flynn's role. Each administration has the power to structure and appoint staff. Trump also placed the Homeland Security Council under McMaster, instead of leaving it as a separate entity, and authorized McMaster to delegate his authority at his discretion to the Homeland Security Adviser, Tom Bossert.

According to the Houston Chronicle, other additions were made to the council, including National Intelligence Director Dan Coats, chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, Marine Corps General Joseph Dunford, CIA Director Mike Pompeo and US Ambassador to the UN Nikki Haley. Those roles had previously been downgraded.

Bannon is not listed on the new memo.

"These are very highly valued members of this administration", he said.

The move also establishes the director of the Central Intelligence Agency as a full member of the powerful principals committee and adds him to the NSC, where he had not been included in the original January 27, 2017, memorandum.

Bannon's Svengali-style reputation has chafed on a president who sees himself as the West Wing's only leading man. The New York Times reported Wednesday that Bannon threatened to leave his role at the White House if he were removed from the NSC, but Bannon called that "100 percent nonsense". A US official confirmed to The Associated Press that Ezra Cohen-Watnick had access to those kinds of intelligence materials, but maintained he didn't play a role in helping the California congressman gain access to the documents.

It is the latest departure in the senior ranks of the White House. This official said that process had been completed.

White nationalist figure Stephen Bannon has been demoted in the White House.


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