Mattis returning to Stanford months after Pentagon resignation

Mattis returning to Stanford months after Pentagon resignation
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Former Defense Secretary James MattisJames Norman MattisOvernight Defense: Watchdog to audit company's border wall contract | Pentagon to step up vetting of foreign students after Pensacola | Report finds former defense official sexually harassed staffers Threatening foreign states with sanctions can backfire Overnight Defense: Erdoğan gets earful from GOP senators | Amazon to challenge Pentagon cloud contract decision in court | Lawmakers under pressure to pass benefits fix for military families MORE, who resigned from the Pentagon's top post in December, is returning to the job he had before joining the Trump administration, Stanford University's Hoover Institution announced Tuesday.

Mattis will start May 1 as the Davies Family distinguished fellow at the Hoover Institution.

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“I have long relied on the work of Hoover to supplement my understanding of the critical challenges facing our country and to help guide tough decisions,” Mattis said in a statement Tuesday. “I believe we have an obligation to pass on the lessons we’ve learned so that future generations can study, learn and become better. Hoover has made this part of its mission, and I look forward to returning.”

Mattis resigned as Defense secretary after President TrumpDonald John TrumpSenate gears up for battle over witnesses in impeachment trial Vulnerable Democrats tout legislative wins, not impeachment Trump appears to set personal record for tweets in a day MORE announced he would withdraw all 2,000 U.S. troops from Syria.

In his resignation letter, Mattis made clear he was leaving because his views did not “align” with Trump’s on the value of alliances such as NATO and the coalition fighting the Islamic State in Iraq and Syria, and on standing firm against U.S. adversaries such as Russia and China.

His resignation prompted a wave of concern on Capitol Hill and elsewhere about the direction of Trump’s defense policies without one of the so-called adults in the room.

The Trump administration has since reversed course on a full Syria withdrawal, saying about 400 U.S. troops will remain in the country.

Mattis, a retired four-star general who led U.S. Central Command, worked at the Hoover Institution from 2013 until his confirmation as Defense secretary in January 2017.

Upon returning to the Hoover Institution, Mattis will focus his work on “domestic and international security policy,” according to Tuesday’s announcement.

He also will participate in events and programs related to military and national security policy both at Stanford’s California campus and at the Hoover Institution’s D.C. office.

“The wealth of knowledge and experience of an already extraordinary career has been made even richer by Gen. Mattis’ latest endeavor as secretary of Defense, and we are fortunate to once again be beneficiaries of his acumen,” Hoover Director Tom Gilligan said in a statement. “One can find no one more universally respected for his honor, character, and relentless commitment to safeguarding American ideals than Jim Mattis.”