UPDATED 8:00 AM PT — Monday, Dec. 31, 2018
Defense Secretary James Mattis releases his farewell message to colleagues at the Pentagon, saying he is leaving them “in the best possible hands.”
The outgoing secretary released the letter on Monday, after announcing his resignation from the agency in Washington D.C., earlier this month.
“Our Department is proven to be at its best when the times are most difficult,” he wrote. “It has been my high honor to serve at your side. May God hold you safe in the air, on land, and at sea.”
Reports suggest Mattis resigned in response to the troop withdrawal in Syria, allegedly saying President Trump deserved someone more aligned with his views.
The Trump Administration announced Patrick Shanahan will now serve as Acting Defense Secretary beginning January 1st.