Gingrich, other Trump loyalists named to Pentagon advisory panel

The Pentagon on Monday named eight new members to its Defense Policy Board, including former House Speaker Newt Gingrich Newton (Newt) Le...


The Pentagon on Monday named eight new members to its Defense Policy Board, including former House Speaker Newt GingrichNewton (Newt) Leroy GingrichMORE, weeks after a purge of the independent advisory group.

The intended appointments to the board, which advises Pentagon leaders on policy issues, come after last month’s sudden removal of nearly a dozen longstanding experts on the panel, including former Secretaries of State Henry Kissinger and Madeleine Albright and former House Majority Leader Eric CantorEric Ivan CantorSpanberger’s GOP challenger raises over .8 million in third quarter The Hill’s Campaign Report: Florida hangs in the balance Eric Cantor teams up with former rival Dave Brat in supporting GOP candidate in former district MORE (R).

The administration made similar replacements on the Defense Business Board in early December.

Among the most controversial names added to the board are Gingrich, a loyalist to President TrumpDonald TrumpTrump decries Cleveland baseball team’s reported name change: ‘Cancel culture at work’ Trump says White House staffers shouldn’t be among first to get coronavirus vaccine Michigan to close legislative office buildings Monday due to ‘credible threats of violence’ MORE, as well as Scott O’Grady, Trump’s nominee for assistant secretary of Defense for international security affairs. Originally known for his career as a fighter pilot, O’Grady has recently sparred with critics on Twitter where he has also retweeted debunked conspiracies that called Trump’s election loss to Joe BidenJoe BidenMichigan to close legislative office buildings Monday due to ‘credible threats of violence’ Adviser says Atlanta mayor turned down Biden Cabinet offer Buttigieg tops list for Biden Transportation secretary: CNN MORE a “coup” attempt, according to CNN.

The other appointees are former U.S. ambassador to the International Civil Aviation Organization Thomas Carter, Edward Luttwak, Thomas Stewart, former Rep. Randy ForbesJames (Randy) Randy ForbesBottom line Selection of Sarah Makin-Acciani shows the commitment to religious liberty Too much ‘can do,’ not enough candor MORE (R-Va.), former Sen. Robert Smith (R-N.H.), and former U.S. Ambassador to El Salvador Charles Glazer.

The Pentagon last week also announced the intended appointments of Michael Pillsbury, a China expert at the Hudson Institute, to serve as the board’s chair, and former National Nuclear Security Administration Administrator Lisa Gordon-Hagerty as a member.

“These incoming members bring extensive defense and national security affairs experience to this advisory committee from their time in Congress, the State Department, our armed forces and beyond,” acting Defense Secretary Chris Miller said in a statement. “I’m confident the Department of Defense will benefit greatly from their time and service to the board.”

The appointments mark Trump’s latest effort to attempt to install loyalists at the Pentagon only weeks before the end of his presidency.

In early December, Trump moved to place top allies Corey LewandowskiCorey LewandowskiTrump ramps up criticism of Barr Trump lawyer Jenna Ellis tests positive for coronavirus Overnight Defense: Trump orders troop withdrawal from Somalia | 13th US service member dies from COVID-19 | Trump loyalists added to DOD advisory board MORE and David Bossie among nine new members of the Defense Business Board, which provides Pentagon leaders with outside advice on business management issues.

That follows the November ousting of Pentagon chief Mark EsperMark EsperFive things to know about Lloyd Austin, Biden’s Pentagon pick Trump ramps up criticism of Barr In defense of Lloyd Austin MORE shortly after Trump lost the election to Biden. In the days that followed, three other top officials departed and were replaced with Trump loyalists.

The Biden administration can still replace Trump’s picks come Jan. 20, so it is not clear if the newly named individuals will become members of the Defense Policy Board.



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Newsrust: Gingrich, other Trump loyalists named to Pentagon advisory panel
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