WASHINGTON (AP) - President Donald Trump says he has fired Defense Secretary Mark Esper. It's a stunning move on the heels of Trump’s failed reelection bid.
It could also unsettle U.S. allies and partners. The conventional wisdom is that stability atop the Pentagon and the military be maintained during a possible transition to a new administration.
Esper was Trump's second defense secretary, succeeding Jim Mattis, who resigned in 2018. Trump announced the news in a tweet, saying that “effective immediately” Christopher Miller, the director of the National Counterterrorism Center, will serve as acting secretary.
...Chris will do a GREAT job! Mark Esper has been terminated. I would like to thank him for his service.
— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) November 9, 2020