Croatian American Official Leaves White House after Row with Melania Trump

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White House Deputy National Security Adviser Mira Ricardel has left her post, following a high-profile row with US First Lady Melania Trump. A White House spokeswoman said the official leaves the White House to transition to a new role within the administration. She did not elaborate, reports BBC on November 15, 2018. Mrs. Trump said this week that Mrs. Ricardel no longer deserves the honour of serving in this White House. The two reportedly feuded during a tour of Africa in October.

Mira Ricardel was the highest-ranking Croatian American in the US administration. She was born as Mira Radielović in 1960, four years after her father came to the United States, moving from Breza in Bosnia and Herzegovina. In their new American home, they always spoke Croatian and regularly attended masses in the Croatian church in Arcadia, California.

Mira devoted her career to international relations and politics. She graduated from Georgetown University in the field of international relations, and several years later she received her doctorate from the Tufts University. Shortly thereafter, she met his first husband, Robert Baratta. With him she gained the initial political experience and soon defined her political position as a “Reagan Republican”, relying on the policies of the Republican president from the 1980s.

In 1986, she was hired by the State Department where she helped managed relations with the US Congress. Three years later, in 1989, she started working with Senator Bob Dole as his legal advisor. After the outbreak of the war on the territory of the former Yugoslavia, she significantly influenced Sen. Bob Dole, enabling him to have a full and real insight into the situation on the ground. Precisely because of this, Serbia accused her at the time for influencing Senator Dole to conduct “anti-Serbian polities”.

She supported Bob Dole in the presidential election in 1996 which he lost to Bill Clinton. She moved to New York and worked for Freedom House for the next few years.

With the return of the Republicans to the White House, Mira Baratta returned to politics, becoming the assistant secretary of defence for international security. At that time, her marriage with Baratta fell apart and she soon married the well-known photographer Vincent Ricardel.

With the departure of George Bush from the White House, Mira Ricardel decided to try her luck in business. She soon became the vice president of Teachscape, and in 2006 she became vice president of Boeing, where she would stay for the next ten years.

After Donald Trump became president, she was first appointed to a position in the Commerce Department, and in April this year, she became the Deputy National Security Adviser.

For more on Croatia’s relations with the United States, click here.


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