Join The Conversation With Mishpacha's Weekly Newsletter

Spotlight: Mike Pompeo

Omri Nahmias

The new secretary of state takes on his biggest assignment to date

Wednesday, May 02, 2018

 Mishpacha image



ike Pompeo

Newly installed secretary of state Mike Pompeo is what you might call credentialed. The Californian, 55, graduated first in his class at the United States Military Academy at West Point, served on the editorial board of the Harvard Law Review, headed the CIA, and served four terms as a congressman from Kansas.

Now he takes on his biggest assignment to date. As the United States’ top diplomat, he must rally world opinion on Iran while engaging in delicate negotiations with North Korea. And then there’s Russian expansion in the Middle East, Syria’s killing fields, and Chinese ambitions in the Far East. We expect he’ll be busy.

72 Hours

That’s how long it took Pompeo to arrive in Jerusalem for a meeting with Prime Minister Netanyahu from the moment he was sworn in on Thursday. In fact, Pompeo headed immediately to Andrews Air Force Base after taking the oath of office, traveling first to NATO headquarters in Brussels and then to Saudi Arabia. His alacrity is in stark contrast to his predecessor, Rex Tillerson, who in his 16 months on the job never set foot in Israel.

Pro-Israel, Anti-Iran

Pompeo’s worldview is very similar — if not identical — to President Trump’s. They are both highly critical of the nuclear agreement with Iran and hugely supportive of Israel. They also both want to leave open the Guantanamo Bay military prison in Cuba and back the use of torture to interrogate terror suspects.

No Business Like Politics

Oh, and he has something else in common with Trump: They were both businesspeople before coming to Washington. Pompeo established Thayer Aerospace, a company that manufactured complex structural components for aircraft. As it happens, when Pompeo later headed a company that supplied equipment for oil fields, he did business with Tillerson. Let’s hope Pompeo has more success in office than the former oilman.

One Voice

Pompeo’s closeness to Trump in worldview will help him in foreign capitals. Unlike his predecessor Tillerson, world leaders will know that Pompeo is speaking in the name of the president. That will be a valuable arrow in his quiver. (Excerpted from Mishpacha, Issue 708)

Related Stories

Washington Wrap: Hope in Korea

Omri Nahmias

Has Trump’s tough line on Iran brought North Korea to the table?

A Few Minutes with Congressman Thomas Suozzi

Omri Nahmias

Congressman Thomas Suozzi (D-NY) explains why progressives should support Israel, and discusses his ...

The Explainer: An Overriding Priority

Tzippy Yarom

Knesset locks horns with court in latest test for Bibi’s coalition

Share this page with a friend. Fill in the information below, and we'll email your friend a link to this page on your behalf.

Your name
Your email address
You friend's name
Your friend's email address
Please type the characters you see in the image into the box provided.

Weekly Struggle
Shoshana Friedman Cover text: promise big and deliver what we promise
Only Through You
Rabbi Moshe Grylak A response to last week’s letter, “Waiting in Passaic”
No Image Available
Are You Making a Kiddush Hashem?
Yonoson Rosenblum In communal affairs, “one bad apple…” often applies
Chance of a Lifetime
Eytan Kobre I identify with the urge to shout, “No, don’t do it!”
No Image Available
Work / Life Solutions with Bunim Laskin
Moe Mernick "You only get every day once"
Seeking a Truly Meaningful Blessing
Dovid Zaidman We want to get married. Help us want to date
Shivah Meditations
Rabbi Emanuel Feldman Equivalence between two such polar opposites is puzzling
Magnet Moment
Jacob L. Freedman Everyone’s fighting a battle we know nothing about
Secrets and Surprises
Riki Goldstein Top-secret suits Eli Gerstner just fine
Blasts of Warmth
Riki Goldstein Keeping the chuppah music upbeat in low temperatures
Behind the Scenes
Faigy Peritzman The intrinsic value of each mitzvah
Good Vision
Sarah Chana Radcliffe Good or bad, nice or not? What you see is what you get
Day of Peace
Mrs. Elana Moskowitz On Shabbos we celebrate peace within and without