Ambassador to Panama on stepping down

Friday, March 9th, 2018, John Feeley US Ambassador to Panama explained his decision to resign from the Trump Administration in an op-ed for the Washington Post. This is what he said:

“Shortly after the Charlottesville riots last August, I made the private decision to step down as President Trump’s personal representative and ambassador to the government of Panama. The president’s failure to condemn the white supremacists and neo-Nazis who provoked the violence made me realize that my values were not his values.”

“I never meant for my decision to resign to be a public political statement. Sadly, it became one.” Feeley continued, speaking to the leak of his resignation that took place last year on December 27th. “The details of how that happened are less important than the demoralizing take-away: When career public servants take an oath to communicate dissent only in protected channels, Trump administration officials do not protect that promise of privacy.” 

“Leaking is not new in Washington.” said Feeley “But leaking a sitting ambassador’s personal resignation letter to the president, as mine was, is something else. This was a painful indication that the current administration has little respect for those who have served the nation apolitically for decades.”

“Now that I am no longer oath-bound to support the president and his policies, several points warrant clarification. I did not resign over any policy decisions regarding my remit in Panama, or — as was incorrectly alleged in the media — due to the president’s denigrating comments about countries that participate in the visa diversity lottery.”

“I resigned because the traditional core values of the United States, as manifested in the president’s National Security Strategy and his foreign policies, have been warped and betrayed. I could no longer represent him personally and remain faithful to my beliefs about what makes America truly great.”

In his statement, Feeley criticizes many of Trump’s security and foreign policy strategies. 

“The amateurish promulgation of a country-specific travel ban, the push to build a “big, beautiful wall” and to expel the “dreamers” beyond it, the withdrawal from the Paris climate accord and the Trans-Pacific Partnership, and the belligerent renegotiating of the North American Free Trade Agreement and counterproductive steel and aluminum tariffs are all making the United States weaker and less prosperous” He says.  

“America is undoubtedly less welcome in the world today, as the president pursues a unilateral and isolationist path.”

"As the grandson of migrant stock from New York City, an Eagle Scout, a Marine Corps veteran and someone who has spent his diplomatic career in Latin America, I am convinced that the president’s policies regarding migration are not only foolish and delusional but also anti-American," Feeley wrote.

However, Feeley also said he is willing to have "respectful and nonconfrontational dialogue" with those who support Trump’s immigration policy and is set to begin work with Univision, an American TV network that caters to Hispanic-Americans, according to The Post.