Jim Mattis was all smiles the day after President Donald Trump reportedly called his former defense secretary “the world’s most overrated general” during a tense White House meeting with lawmakers on Wednesday regarding Syria.
The broadside from the president didn’t seem to faze the retired four-star Marine Corps general as he delivered remarks Thursday during the Al Smith Memorial Foundation Dinner in New York, where he was the keynote speaker, according to Politico.
“I stand before you ... really having achieved greatness. I mean, I’m not just an overrated general. I am the greatest, the world’s most overrated," Mattis quipped.
Mattis continued: “I am honored to be considered that by Donald Trump because he also called Meryl Streep an overrated actress. So I guess I’m the Meryl Streep of generals. And frankly, that sounds pretty good to me. And you do have to admit, that between me and Meryl, at least we’ve had some victories."
Should we add “Meryl Streep of generals” to the list of “Mattisisms?”
Mattis announced his resignation as secretary of defense in December 2018, saying he would leave the Pentagon in late February. Trump, however, announced on Twitter that an acting defense secretary would fill the post on Jan. 1. Mattis’ resignation came after Trump announced American forces would withdraw from Syria.
Watch Mattis’ moment: