Tags: michael hayden | james mattis | counterbalance | trump

Michael Hayden: Mattis Will Be a 'Counterbalance' to Trump

(Fox News/"Fox & Friends")

By    |   Wednesday, 07 Dec 2016 12:17 PM

President-elect Donald Trump's choice for secretary of Defense, retired Marine Gen. James Mattis, will act as a "counterbalance" for Trump in the realm of national defense, Gen. Michael Hayden said Wednesday. 

"I welcome him. Not because I think he'll be over-energetic in the use of the American armed forces," Hayden, former director of the CIA and National Security Agency, told Fox News' "Fox & Friends" program.

"I think he will be a counterbalance to a president-elect who sometimes seems to speak— and I hope doesn't act — rashly, but with Mattis there, he will always know the true cost of any military action, so I really do like that choice."

When asked if he believed Trump was hiring too many generals for his administration, Hayden said he's "certainly not worried," and praised Mattis, comparing him to Gen. George Marshal who was former President Harry Truman's secretary of Defense. 

Show co-host Brian Kilmeade asked Hayden to respond to a study that showed the Pentagon wasted billions, then tried to keep it from Congress.

The number is "probably" correct, "given the size of the Pentagon," said Hayden, "I'm disappointed that it was suppressed, if that's true."

Hayden then commented on Gen. David Petraeus as possible secretary of State, saying he is a good choice for the job.

"Some have criticized Dave for that security issue he had in the past," referring to Petraeus providing classified information to his biographer, with whom he was having an affair.

"If you are worried about the future secretary of defense being sensitive about security matters, you couldn't pick anyone better than Dave Petraeus right now, given his life experience," Hayden added.

North Korea, however, must be a focus for Trump, Hayden said, because "their pattern is to provoke. I expect that to happen in the first six months."

Making a plan for dealing with ISIS, Syria, and Iraq is also important and the "arc of danger" has risen and decreased since the 9/11 terror attacks. "We're more safe than we were 15 years ago, but less safe than we were five years ago… it's far from over."

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President-elect Donald Trump's choice for secretary of Defense, retired Marine Gen. James Mattis, will act as a "counterbalance" for Trump in the realm of national defense, Gen. Michael Hayden said Wednesday.
michael hayden, james mattis, counterbalance, trump
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2016-17-07
Wednesday, 07 Dec 2016 12:17 PM
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