he had been summarily removed from his position. The senior diplomat turned around and got on the first flight back to Washington.When I was a kid, I would get a very hard spanking when I was caught out messing in adult affairs that might have looked like fun but were outside my competence.
It was a sudden and unceremonious end to 35 years as a foreign service officer, the last four months of it as the acting undersecretary for arms control and international security. But Countryman was not alone. The Trump White House carried out an abrupt purge of the state department’s senior leadership last week, removing key officials from posts that are essential to the day-to-day running of the department and US missions abroad.