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WASHINGTON — President Trump on Monday fired Defense Secretary Mark T. Esper, the latest casualty in the president’s revolving door of top national security officials who fell on the wrong side of their boss.
Mr. Trump announced the decision on Twitter, writing in an abrupt post that Mr. Esper had been “terminated.”
The president wrote that he was appointing Christopher C. Miller, whom he described as the “highly respected” director of the National Counterterrorism Center, to be acting defense secretary. Mr. Miller will be the fourth official to lead the Pentagon under Mr. Trump.
The president noted that Mr. Miller had already been approved by the Senate for his current position, perhaps as a way to argue that the firing of a defense secretary should not be viewed as a sign of turmoil in the highest ranks of the nation’s national security structure.