WASHINGTON — The State Department, in a highly unusual move, has quietly yanked career Foreign Service officer Jon David Glassman from his job as ambassador to Paraguay only a few months before his three-year tour was to have been completed.
Glassman, a national security aide to former Vice President Dan Quayle, was summarily bounced by Assistant Secretary of State Alexander F. Watson and principal deputy Michael Skol around mid-February and was given until April 30 to leave Asuncion.
Administration officials insist that the move had nothing to do with Glassman's identification with Quayle or his authorship of a controversial "white paper" that the Ronald Reagan Administration used to "prove" that the Salvadoran rebels were Cuban and Soviet puppets.
Officials said that the problem was mostly one of style. The hard-charging Glassman had been U.S. charge d'affaires to Afghanistan and closed the U.S. Embassy there in 1989. He was sent to Paraguay by President George Bush. Word is that he was too undiplomatic in leaning on the Paraguayan government to crack down on drug smugglers and money launderers. He had simply stepped on too many toes too often.