WASHINGTON – President Donald Trump has named Lieutenant General Herbert Raymond McMaster as his new national security adviser.
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McMaster is a highly-regarded military tactician and strategic thinker, but his selection surprised some observers who wondered how the officer, whose career in US Army stalled at times for his questioning of authority, would deal with a White House that has not welcomed criticism.
The new NSA will replace Lt Gen Michael Flynn who was fired after just three weeks and three days in the job after misleading Vice-President Mike Pence over his conversations with Russia’s ambassador to the US.
A lieutenant general with the US Army, HR McMaster served in Iraq and Afghanistan, where he worked on a government anti-corruption drive. He does not appear to have close ties to Moscow, and was recently commissioned to study the ways the US could counter some of Russia’s military advances.
Trump has praised Herbert Raymond McMaster as “a man of tremendous talent and tremendous experience” who is “highly respected by everybody in the military”.
Time magazine named him as one of its 100 most influential people in the world in 2014, saying he “might be the 21st Century Army’s pre-eminent warrior-thinker”.
McMaster criticized the US military’s involvement in the Vietnam War in his book Dereliction of Duty.
He has a PhD in US history from the University of North Carolina.
Gen McMaster has said it is “a privilege… to be able to continue serving our nation” and that he looks forward to joining the national security team.
His role involves serving as an independent adviser to the president on issues of national security and foreign policy. It is one of the most senior roles in the US government.