There will be a changing of the guard on April 9, as former U.S. Ambassador to the U.N. John Bolton replaces Lt. Gen. H.R. McMaster as President Trump’s new national security advisor. Bolton is a native of Baltimore, MD and attended Yale University, where he received both his undergraduate and juris doctorate degrees.
While many recognize Bolton as a commentator on Fox News, he has a long resume of political and social accomplishments. Bolton is a fellow at the American Enterprise Institute, former policy adviser to 2012 presidential aspirant Mitt Romney, senior adviser to Freedom Capital Investment Management and counsel to Washington D.C law firm Kirkland & Ellis.
It’s no secret that Bolton is a hawk when it comes to national defense. One needs to look no further than Bolton’s views on the U.S. invasion of Iraq. Bolton joined other administration officials in expressing confidence that Saddam Hussein had weapons of mass destruction and that Iraqis would welcome the U.S. overthrow of the regime. Wrong and wrong! Bolton still defends his position today by expressing that the world is a safer place without Saddam Hussein.
President Trump ran for election on a populist/nationalist platform, one in which the United States would assume a more isolationist world view. With that said, it is of interest that he has selected a national security advisor who has proclaimed that a pre-emptive strike on Iraq and/or North Korea could be the right strategic move.
One certain point of agreement between Bolton and Trump is their contempt for the United Nations. Trump acknowledges that the U.S. pays for far more than it should, while Bolton, former ambassador to the U.N. appointed by George W. Bush, has stated, “The United States makes the UN work when it wants it to work, and that is exactly the way it should be, because the only question, the only question for the United States is what is in our national interest. And if you don’t like that, I’m sorry, but that is the fact.”
Bolton will make sure the Iran nuclear deal is dead, and the threat of a nuclear attack against Israel and our homeland will never happen. Bolton is a steadfast neo-conservative with notably hawkish views. It will be interesting to see how his solid stances on hot button issues as Iran and North Korea mesh with his new boss’ tendencies to make quick decisions that are often unpredictable. Only time will tell.