President Donald Trump’s decision to elevate Steve Bannon, the White House chief strategist, to a permanent position on the Principals Committee of the National Security Council was amplified by a cut-and-paste error, according to a report from The New York Times.
Trump’s team did not specifically intend to elevate Steve Bannon, a political appointee, above the chairman of the Joint Chiefs and the intelligence director when crafting the January 28 memo that laid out the organisation of the NSC.
Trump’s aides cut-and-pasted language from former President George W. Bush’s organisation chart, replacing the national intelligence director with the CIA director, not realising that, under the Obama Administration, both positions were made full members of the NSC, Trump Administration officials told The New York Times’ Peter Baker.
Bannon was placed on the Principals Committee — an interagency forum that deals with policy issues affecting national security, usually reserved for cabinet secretaries and top military and intelligence officials — through the January memo. The memo elevated Bannon to a permanent position on the committee, and removed the director of national intelligence and the chairman of the Joint chiefs as regular attendees.
The move was widely criticised as injecting politics into national security matters.
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