Monday, September 23, 2019
Home /  United States  /  Trump fires hawkish national security advisor John Bolton

Trump fires hawkish national security advisor John Bolton

Trump fires hawkish national security advisor John Bolton

AFP
Washington
President Donald Trump on Tuesday announced the firing of his hawkish national security advisor John Bolton, saying he disagreed “strongly” with his positions, in the latest upheaval for US foreign policy.
“I asked John for his resignation, which was given to me this morning,” Trump announced on Twitter, saying he would name a replacement next week.
Bolton, who had been due to give a press conference at the White House less than two hours later, denied being fired and insisted instead that he’d resigned. The news -- coming days after Trump caused uproar by revealing he was cancelling secret talks with Afghanistan’s Taliban -- stunned Washington.
Bolton is a veteran and controversial figure closely linked to the invasion of Iraq and other aggressive foreign policy decisions. He had been seen as one of the main driving forces in the White House’s muscular approach to Iran, Venezuela and other trouble spots.
Famous for his moustache and ever-present yellow legal pad, the hardline former US ambassador to the United Nations had pushed back hard against Trump’s dramatic, though so far stumbling attempts to negotiate with the Taliban and North Korea’s Chairman Kim Jong-un.
According to US media reports, the president’s extraordinary bid to fly Taliban leaders into the presidential retreat at Camp David last weekend sparked a major row.
As so often in the Trump presidency, the abrupt reshuffle appeared to contain an element of chaos. Bolton was Trump’s third national security advisor and joins a stack of senior officials who have come and gone during the Republican businessman’s tumultuous first term in office.
Trump, who has a habit of announcing major news on his personal Twitter account, revealed the sacking at around midday. He said that he’d informed Bolton of his decision on Monday night.
The White House press office, however, seemed to have been unaware. It sent out a message announcing that Bolton would shortly be giving a press conference on terrorism issues alongside Secretary of State Mike Pompeo.
Bolton himself disputed Trump’s version of events, saying that the president had not fired him in person, as he claimed, late on Monday.
“I offered to resign last night and President Trump said, “Let’s talk about it tomorrow,” Bolton tweeted.
A Fox News television reporter said that he had received a text from Bolton in which he underlined: “Let’s be clear, I resigned.”
Trump came into office promising to extricate the United States from military entanglements. Bolton was often seen as offering a hawkish counterbalance, which Trump would then take into consideration.

POST A COMMENT