President Donald Trump fired his secretary of state on Tuesday, announcing on Twitter that he would elevate his spymaster to the role of global diplomat-in-chief.
And he said he will appoint a woman to lead the CIA for the first time in history.
'Mike Pompeo, Director of the CIA, will become our new Secretary of State. He will do a fantastic job!' the president tweeted.
'Thank you to Rex Tillerson for his service! Gina Haspel will become the new Director of the CIA, and the first woman so chosen. Congratulations to all!
Haspel was the CIA's deputy director, a career officer who was a longtime clandestine officer.
In a statement, Trump said Pompeo 'graduated first in his class at West Point, served with distinction in the U.S. Army, and graduated with Honors from Harvard Law School. He went on to serve in the U.S. House of Representatives with a proven record of working across the aisle.'
He called Haspel's move to the CIA's reins 'a historic milestone.'
Trump also had words of praise for Tillerson: 'A great deal has been accomplished over the last fourteen months, and I wish him and his family well,' he said.
The president, however, had clashed with Tillerson over and over again in the past year, seeing him as a relic of the Republican establishment at a time when the nation needed more unconventional thinking.
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