As recent as Tuesday morning, The Atlantic questioned the role #Rex Tillerson plays as the new #Secretary of State, comparing him to George Shultz who held that position under Ronald Reagan. Because much like Tillerson, Shultz was the head of a corporation, the executive vice president for the Betchel Group. But, unlike Tillerson, Shultz already had government experience as Secretary of Labor and as the first director of the Office of Management and Budget.
He was asked by the press on Tuesday to comment on that morning's chemical attack on Syrian civilians during his photo op with King Abdullah II bin Al-Hussein at the #State Department.
Footage of the moment shows Tillerson walking into the room with Al-Hussein to pose for a handshake only to turn and leave thus shunning the press. This is no different from how Tillerson operates as the Atlantic article titled: "The Silence of Rex Tillerson" makes another comparison saying that it would be unusual for even a Secretary of Defense to "routinely inspect the sentries and walk point on patrols," but that this is essentially what Tillerson does.
Intentionally secluded, protected from reality
The reasons for his routine inspections were apparent after the Washington Post wrote about Tillerson's isolation from the rest of the State Department. The report said that he takes a private elevator to his "palatial office" on the seventh floor where he often spends hours reading memos and he only interacts with an "insular circle of political aides" who are apparently there to keep him on message and loyal to Trump.
The Washington Post has been credited with reporting on those political aides, but it was ProPublica that initially broke the story in early March of Trump loyalists spread throughout the government.
Referring back to the mentioned article by the Post; it says that people in the State Department have been told to not talk to Tillerson and to not even look at him. The ProPublica report about those aides -- which are likely the ones who make up his insular circle -- come from extreme right-wing origins who know little about government other than that they want to destroy it, or at the very least, disrupt it.
State Department is defenseless
In the Post article about Tillerson's isolation, Rep. Eliot L. Engel (N.Y.) said that Tillerson contacted him after it was revealed that cuts were to be made at the State Department. The concern from many is that the administration is looking to make the State Department irrelevant and from what Blasting News has asserted over time in various reports is that this intends to be the case.
In his conversation with the Secretary, Engel provided a (so far) rare peek of Tillerson's acquiescence saying that the cuts to the State Department were "draconian" and even "counterproductive," before adding that it was "a glide path to what was about to happen." Engle even wondered what was happening or not happening with the State Department, saying essentially what Blasting News has said that to him it certainly looked as if the administration was trying to make the State Department irrelevant.
Then he wondered why Tillerson would take the job if he wasn't going to defend the Department. The answer to Engle's question had appeared in print a week before in yet another article, this time by the Independent Journal Review titled: "Trump's Diplomat," written by the only reporter to travel and interview Tillerson while on a flight to Beijing. In the interview, he acknowledged that the Department was driving people crazy by not telling them what they were doing. He also said that the previous administration's constant public statements were a major problem. But, this recalls when the Department spokesman was recently removed after expressing support for the anti-Russian protesters who made headlines for being arrested. A more direct answer to Engle's question, however, is that Tillerson didn't really want the job to begin with.