President Obama on Monday promoted an official to be his top adviser in the fight against the Islamic State, one he fired from his presidential campaign in 2008 for talking to Hamas.

White House spokesman Josh Earnest said Rob Malley, now a senior director at the National Security Council, would be his senior adviser for the counter-Islamic State program. Malley, a Clinton administration alumni, will work closely with Brett McGurk, special presidential envoy for the global coalition to counter the Islamic State, Earnest said.

Malley was fired from then-Sen. Barack Obama's first presidential campaign in 2008 for meeting with Hamas officials when he was an informal adviser to the campaign. Obama at the time was downplaying the idea he would negotiate with groups opposed to Israel.

While Obama's camp said Malley was an outsider at the time, he became a senior director of the National Security Council.

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