Left uncertain is what, if anything, will happen regarding Stephen K. Bannon, the president’s chief strategist, who has played a major role in shaping foreign policy. Under the original organization plan last month, Mr. Bannon was invited to attend any National Security Council meeting led by the president and was made a regular member of the so-called principals committee of cabinet secretaries…
While the decision to give Mr. Bannon a seat was a conscious one, Mr. Trump’s team did not intend to reduce the role of the intelligence director or Joint Chiefs chairman, officials said. In crafting their organization order, the officials said, Mr. Trump’s aides essentially cut and pasted language from Mr. Bush’s organization chart, substituting the national intelligence director for the C.I.A. director, who back then was the head of the nation’s spy agencies.
What Mr. Trump’s team did not realize, officials said, was that Mr. Obama’s organization chart made those two positions full members of the committee.
As a practical matter, Mr. Trump’s aides may not have intended a substantive change, but the political symbolism of elevating Mr. Bannon while seemingly demoting military and intelligence leaders was an immediate distraction.