CNN reported Thursday that the Pentagon is examining possible scenarios that would allow President Donald Trump the ability to move National Security Adviser H.R. McMaster from his current position back into a military role.
The news comes not long after Trump publicly criticized McMaster over comments the general made affirming Russia's election meddling but also follows months of strained relationship.
Several sources told CNN that the push for a replacement comes after months of personal tension between McMaster and Trump. The task of easing McMaster out of his role as national security adviser presents a unique challenge for the White House.
While administration officials have privately said the preference is to move McMaster into a position within the Army or Defense Department that qualifies as a promotion, some within the Pentagon feel he has become politicized in the White House and have expressed reservations about him returning to the military in a prominent role. Some defense officials caution that the President could also go as far as not to offer him a fourth star and force him to retire.
White House sources indicate the president has long been displeased with his national security adviser.
The two have never gotten along, and Trump continues to chafe at McMaster's demeanor when he briefs him, feeling that he is gruff and condescending, according to a source who is familiar with his thinking.
Tensions between Trump and McMaster were reignited over the weekend when McMaster told attendees at a security meeting in Germany that special counsel Robert Mueller's recent indictments against numerous Russians constitute "incontrovertible" evidence that Russia meddled in U.S. elections.
General McMaster forgot to say that the results of the 2016 election were not impacted or changed by the Russians and that the only Collusion was between Russia and Crooked H, the DNC and the Dems. Remember the Dirty Dossier, Uranium, Speeches, Emails and the Podesta Company!