In another blow to newly instated US President Donald Trump and his administration, which is still struggling to find its feet, Vice Admiral Robert Harward has turned down the president’s job offer for the position of national security adviser. The admiral has cited personal and financial priorities as the reason for him not taking up the job. “It’s purely a personal issue,” Harward said Thursday evening. The US media, however, reports that Harward wanted to bring in his own team, which is what led him to turn down the job. When asked about the same, the former vice admiral said, “I think that’s for the president to address.”
“I’m in a unique position finally after being in the military for 40 years to enjoy some personal time,” Harward is reported to have told the AP, adding that the Trump administration was “very accommodating to my needs, both professionally and personally.”
This comes in the wake of the US president defending his administration amid reports of his team, fledgling at the helm, not being able to hold its ground, with Trump claiming it was in fact running like a “fine-tuned machine”.
Harward would have filled the shoes of Michael Flynn, after the latter was let go by the US president over reports that Flynn misled Vice President Mike Pence regarding his conversation with the Russian ambassador to the US.
Harward was a former Navy Seal. He served as a deputy commander of US Central Command under General James Mattis, now the defence secretary. Harward has been on the National Security Council under the Bush administration as well as the National Counter Terrorism Center.
He retired in 2013 after almost 40 years of being with the Navy Seals.
– With inputs from AP.