Patel, a former aide to Republican Rep. Devin Nunes, is currently serving as Secretary of Defense Christopher Miller’s chief of staff, and it is not uncommon for someone in that job to play a key role in the transition effort. .My My.
“The head of staff approached the agency’s review committee. … His goal is to be the secretary’s point of contact, to make sure the secretary has insight into what is happening, and to ensure that the change is successful,” Chief Pentagon spokesman Jonathan Hoffman told a conference at the Pentagon there on Tuesday afternoon. Patel confirmed the role of change.
Patel was promoted to his current job as part of a recent clean-up of Pentagon officials, including President Donald Trump, who fired Defense Secretary Mark Esper, and his reputation as a staunch Trump loyalist. Political agenda while in office.
The House indictment found evidence linking Patel, who was then Nunes’ aide to the diplomatic back channel led by Trump lawyer Rudy Giuliani, and attempts to spread conspiracy theories about Joe Biden and to persuade Ukraine. Former Vice President.
He has also worked to discredit Special Adviser Robert Mueller’s investigation into Russian interference in the 2016 presidential election.
Patel, who most recently served as senior director of counterterrorism at the White House National Security Council, served as Miller’s chief of staff following Esper’s ouster earlier this month, and had a “very close” working relationship with the newly established acting defense secretary, a former executive of CNN.
But the move is part of a shift in staffing at the Pentagon that raises concerns about the expulsion of officials across the Trump administration and the burying of loyalists as agencies, making it difficult to remove them next year.
Since arriving at the Pentagon, Patel has oversaw the controversial decision to withdraw troops from Iraq and Afghanistan.
Sources told CNN’s Jack Tapper earlier this month that the White House-led cleanup in the defense sector may have been motivated by the fact that Esper and his team were pushed back from an early withdrawal from Afghanistan, fulfilling the necessary pre-ground conditions.
Hours after Biden’s election victory was formally acknowledged by the Public Service Administration, he was contacted by the Pentagon’s Biden-Harris team and said he would “immediately begin implementing our plan to provide support.”
“The DOT is ready to provide post – election services and support in a professional, orderly and efficient manner, which is in line with the Department’s public commitment and our commitment to national security,” Pentagon spokeswoman Sue Koff said in a statement.
Thomas Muir, director of Washington headquarters services, has been a key DOD supporter of the change, while Patel is leading the overall effort, another security official said.
Muir confirmed on Tuesday that an office space had been allocated for the Biden team at the Pentagon and that a meeting had taken place between the two teams.
“We received our first discussions and exchanged electronic emails. The first meeting today was video telecommunications, virtual. Good production meetings, we laid down some sort of floor rules. The team is ready, I can tell you for sure that the Pentagon is governed by Govt controls.”
A senior security official said before Patel oversaw the change, his predecessor, Jen Stewart, Esper’s chief of staff, was responsible for the effort.