April 28, 2017

Among Trump aides, Mattis emerges as a key voice on national security issues

Featuring Richard Fontaine

Source: The Washington Post

Journalists Missy Ryan, Thomas Gibbons-Neff, Philip Rucker

When Defense Secretary Jim Mattis sat down with leaders in Saudi Arabia last week, a top White House official traveling with him offered up a new label for the Pentagon chief, who is well known as a combat-hardened former general: “favorite of the president.”

The depiction from deputy national security adviser Dina Powell, however lighthearted, sheds light on the substantial role that Mattis has assumed since taking charge at the Pentagon three months ago, as one of President Trump’s most influential advisers and a commanding voice on foreign policy issues.

Mattis’s strong standing in Trump’s Cabinet makes the top Pentagon position more powerful than it has been in recent years, helping to steer the administration toward more traditional foreign policy positions while allocating greater authority and resources to the military at a time of complex and myriad global threats.

Read the full article at The Washington Post.


  • Richard Fontaine

    Chief Executive Officer

    Richard Fontaine is the Chief Executive Officer of CNAS. He served as President of CNAS from 2012–19 and as Senior Fellow from 2009–12. Prior to CNAS, he was foreign policy ad...