WASHINGTON | Mattis farewell to Pentagon staff: ‘Hold fast’ to US defense

WASHINGTON | Mattis farewell to Pentagon staff: ‘Hold fast’ to US defense

WASHINGTON — On his final day as defense secretary, Jim Mattis on Monday urged all Pentagon employees, military and civilian, to “hold fast” in defense of the nation.

Mattis, who submitted his resignation on Dec. 20 and was, in effect, fired by President Donald Trump three days later, was working in the Pentagon on Monday and preparing to hand off his duties at midnight to Deputy Secretary Patrick Shanahan. Trump picked Shanahan, a former Boeing Co.

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