Washington, Dec 23: US President Donald Trump claimed that he gave Defence Secretary James Mattis a "second chance" after the retired Marine general was "ingloriously fired" from military leadership by former president Barack Obama.
"When President Obama ingloriously fired Jim Mattis, I gave him a second chance. Some thought I shouldn’t, I thought I should. Interesting relationship-but I also gave all of the resources that he never really had. Allies are very important-but not when they take advantage of US," Trump said on Twitter late on Saturday.
Mattis in a resignation letter said he was stepping down at the end of February citing the fact that Trump needed to find a defence chief, whose views were more aligned with his own.
Mattis' resignation came a day after the White House said the United States was withdrawing troops from Syria, the plans which the outgoing defence chief has previously slammed as a "strategic blunder."
The unexpected move to exit Syria has been widely criticised by many US lawmakers, who argued the action would undermine the US security and give away the region to Russia, Iran, and Syria.
Trump said on Friday that a new US secretary of defence will be announced shortly.(UNI)