Following the termination of Michael Flynn, President Donald Trump announced Monday that Lt. Gen. H.R. McMaster will serve as his new national security adviser.
After Flynn was forced to resign after just 24 days in the administration, McMaster, head of the Army Capabilities Integration Center, will be taking the place of a top national security and foreign policy adviser.
Filling in shortly for the position following Flynn’s dismissal, Lt. Gen. Keith Kellogg had been serving as the temporary national security adviser. He will now return to his job as chief of staff of the National Security Council.
Flynn’s dismissal was caused after a report surfaced that said Flynn discussed sanctions with Russia’s ambassador to the U.S., Segei Kislyak, before the Trump administration stepped into office. Trump said he terminated Flynn from the position because he failed to disclose this information to Vice President Mike Pence. He specified that the firing did not occur because of the conversation with the Russian ambassador.
Trump interviewed several candidates for the position, but announced McMaster as the official adviser Monday at his Mar-a-Lago residence in Florida.
Trump said about McMaster:
“He is a man of tremendous talent and tremendous experience. I watched and read a lot over the last two days. He is highly respected by everybody in the military, and we’re very honored to have him.”
McMaster said he looks forward to doing “everything I can to advance and protect the interests of the American people,” also calling the appointment a privilege.
Last week, Trump requested retired Vice Adm. Robert Harward to fill the position, however was turned down due to concerns about how the White House was being run, according to CNN.
McMaster has served tours of duty in Germany, Southwest Asia, and Iraq. He served as special assistant to Gen. David Petraeus during the 2007 troop surge in Iraq. The new adviser earned a PhD in military history from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill.
The adviser has received praise from those in Congress, including Armed Services Committee Chairman Sen. John McCain.
McCain said regarding McMaster,
“I have had the honor of knowing him for many years, and he is a man of genuine intellect, character, and ability. He knows how to succeed. I give President Trump great credit for this decision, as well as his national security cabinet choices. I could not imagine a better, more capable national security team than the one we have right now.”