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Trump Announces Mattis Is Stepping Down As Defense Secretary

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Trump Announces Mattis Is Stepping Down As Defense Secretary
Mattis said in a letter to Trump the president has the right to a defense secretary "whose views are better aligned with yours."
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President Donald Trump announced on Thursday that Defense Secretary Jim Mattis will be stepping down from his position in February of next year.

In his resignation letter, Mattis said: "Because you have the right to have a Secretary of Defense whose views are better aligned with yours. ... I believe it is right for me to step down from my position."

His resignation comes just a day after Trump made public his decision to withdraw American troops from Syria, a move that was reportedly opposed by Mattis and other top security advisers.

In a tweet announcing Mattis' retirement, Trump said the secretary's replacement will be announced soon.