The White House fired Steve Bannon today.
Well, not totally. He was removed from his controversial and wholly unwarranted seat on the National Security Council. Bannon has no, as in none, as in zero qualifications to sit on the NSC apart from the fact that he sets the white nationalist, xenophobic, anti-Islam agenda for the administration. This was clear from the beginning, especially when Bannon was given a permanent NSC role while people whose jobs are actually national security-related, like the chair of the JCS and the Director of National Intelligence, weren’t given permanent NSC seats (both, by the way, had their seats restored in today’s shakeup). Between the public/media criticism that attended Bannon’s initial NSC appointment and the appointment of new National Security Advisor General H.R. McMaster, a guy who, if nothing else, appears to take the professional conduct of the NSC seriously, there was no place there for Bannon anymore. He had to go.
Of course, the administration can’t say that. But the reason they’re giving for removing Bannon is so unbelievably lame that you have to wonder if these guys are even trying anymore:
A White House official said that Bannon was placed on the committee in part to monitor Trump’s first national security adviser, Michael Flynn, and never attended a meeting. He’s no longer needed with McMaster in charge of the council, the official said.
If there was anybody in the Trump administration whose views on the world, foreign policy, and national security aligned with Bannon’s, it was Michael Flynn. Moreover, Flynn was Trump’s Favorite General™, chosen to fill the most influential national security role in the administration despite myriad evidence to show that, temperamentally at least, he was a bad choice for the gig. He’s gone now, fired over meetings he had with Russian ambassador Sergey Kislyak during the transition that he apparently concealed/lied about, and now we’re told that Bannon was put on the NSC to “monitor” Flynn, as though the administration had concerns about him from the beginning.
What a crock of shit. If the administration had concerns about Flynn, serious enough that Bannon needed to be on the NSC to “monitor” him, why appoint him in the first place? Because Trump wanted him so badly? If that were the case, Trump probably wouldn’t have fired him so easily. Bannon is “no longer needed” with McMaster running the NSC probably because McMaster isn’t interested in turning the NSC in a ideologically-driven shop given over to pushing Bannon’s and Flynn’s pet theories about war with Islam, the global Legion of Doom amassing to destroy America, threats to Christendom and the white race, etc. So, in reality, it would be more accurate to say that Bannon is no longer, you know, wanted.
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