A White House official confirmed on Friday evening that Sebastian Gorka has left his post as Deputy Assistant to President Trump. In a letter to the president, Gorka wrote: “[G]iven recent events, it is clear to me that forces that do not support the MAGA [Make America Great Again] promise are – for now – ascendant within the White House.” He added, “As a result, the best and most effective way I can support you, Mr. President, is from outside the People’s House.”
According to The Federalist, the White House issued a statement that said, “Sebastian Gorka did not resign, but I can confirm he no longer works at the White House.”
Gorka (46) expressed dissatisfaction over the course Trump’s foreign policy has taken, particularly with regard to Afghanistan:
“Regrettably, outside of yourself, the individuals who most embodied and represented the policies that will ‘Make America Great Again,’ have been internally countered, systematically removed, or undermined in recent months. This was made patently obvious as I read the text of your speech on Afghanistan this week…
“The fact that those who drafted and approved the speech removed any mention of Radical Islam or radical Islamic terrorism proves that a crucial element of your presidential campaign has been lost…
“Just as worrying, when discussing our future actions in the region, the speech listed operational objectives without ever defining the strategic victory conditions we are fighting for. This omission should seriously disturb any national security professional, and any American who is unsatisfied with the last 16 years of disastrous policy decisions which have led to thousands of Americans killed and trillions of taxpayer dollars spent in ways that have not brought security or victory.”
During the presidential campaign and then during his tenure in the Trump administration, Gorka was active in policymaking regarding issues such as the Muslim Brotherhood, long-term national security strategy, and China’s economic warfare. Born in the UK of Hungarian parents, Gorka had previously been the Major General Matthew C. Horner Chair at Marine Corps University. He was also a contributor to Breitbart News and a frequent guest on Fox News. Gorka joined Trump's staff as a senior member of the Strategic Initiatives Group, an internal study group reporting to Stephen Bannon and Jared Kushner, the president’s son-in-law and senior adviser. When the group was disbanded, Gorka was left without a distinct portfolio.
During his time at the White House, Gorka battled unusually harsh and ultimately false accusations and attacks against himself and family members by Democrats and left-leaning media.
The Forward is one of the leftist media that published dozens of articles attacking Gorka, some of which sought to align him with Nazism. Recently, The Forward retracted a story about his son’s schoolwork. Gorka vociferiously objected to suggestions that he was tied to Nazism in his parents’ homeland, Hungary, where he had once been involved in national politics. His detractors finally admitted that the accusations of Nazism were smears.
Gorka wrote in his resignation letter that he remains confident in the Trump administration:
“Your presidency will prove to be one of the most significant events in modern American politics. November the 8th was the result of decades during which the political and media elites felt that they knew better than the people who elect them into office. They do not, and the MAGA platform allowed their voices to be heard,” he wrote, adding, “Millions of people believe in, and have chosen, you and your vision of Making America Great Again. They will help eventually rebalance this temporary reality.”
Some media outlets are suggesting Gorka’s departure signifies another loss for a nationalist faction within the Trump administration, which also recently saw the departure of Stephen Bannon. There are some that are suggesting that White House Chief of Staff Matthew Kelly was anxious to see Gorka leave.
As early as May, there were reports that Gorka would soon leave the White House to take a job in the federal government to address the threat of radical Islam. CNN reported that administration officials had confirmed Gorka's departure, while The Hill reported that an official said that Gorka would leave "this summer." Within the administration, there were those who sniped at Gorka, claiming he had no clear role at the White House beyond appearing on television, and that he had little counter-terrorism experience.