“Mad Dog” To Lead Defense, Duterte Coming To D.C.
Donald Trump has nominated his Secretary of Defense, selecting retired James Mattis, a retired Marine Corps general who once served as commander of the U.S. Central Command. Owing to his brush personality, Mattis has earned the nickname “Mad Dog.” Back in 2005 Mattis caused a bit of a controversy after he claimed that it was “fun to shoot people”, referencing fights with the Taliban.
Despite his forward mannerisms, most consider Mattis to be thoughtful and even cautious. Before the Iraq invasion, Mattis wrote his marines, urging them to think before they pulled the trigger. Mattis also implemented the military’s COIN strategy, which seeks to battle extremism holistically, examining and addressing its root causes. Among other things, Mattis has encouraged his soldiers to work with local community and to gain their trust. In previous speeches Mattis has also warned against U.S. isolationism, and will likely encourage a pro-active American role in the world.
Trump has already filled many of the other important seats in his cabinet, including the U.N. Secretary, Chief of Staff, and the Secretary of Treasury. So far, his cabinet is also one of the richest in history, with billionaire Betsy Devos set to lead up the education department, and Wilbur Ross, a billionaire industrial set to lead Commerce.
Some people believe that Trump’s choices stand in stark opposition to his populists campaign rhetoric. Many of the members of his cabinet are either wealthy elitists, or else D.C. insiders. The biggest post yet to be filled, the Secretary of State position, remains open.
Meanwhile, Filipino President Rodrigo Duterte has apparently been extended an invite to Washington D.C. to meet with President Trump. Duterte has been highly antagonistic towards the Obama administration, but applauded Trump’s victory. Both Trump and Duterte are well known for their antagonistic, off-the-cuff remarks. Trump has apparently promised Duterte a “clean slate.”
Finally, despite Trump’s pledge to step away from his business, he continues to come under fire for his massive global holdings. Now critics are taking aim at his stock portfolio, which includes oil companies and banks. Many fear that Trump’s interests in various industries will affect his ability to govern objectively.
Despite Trump’s anti-Wall Street sentiments, he holds millions of dollars in Goldman Sachs and Wells Fargo stocks. He also owns shares of Halliburton, ExxonMobile, and other companies that regularly make their way into the news. These companies are also known for having a lot of clout within the beltway.