President Donald Trump used his favorite method of communication, Twitter, on Thursday to announce that H.R. McMaster was out as National Security Advisor and was being replaced by Bush administration veteran and frequent Fox News commentator John Bolton.
General McMaster, who replaced Michael Flynn as National Security Advisor when the latter was forced to resign, was long reported to be at odds with Trump and, according to a report from CNN, he and the president didn’t work together well, with Trump referring to McMaster as “gruff and condescending,” and a Republican source saying that their “personality and style” didn’t match.
McMaster’s ouster is only the latest in a wild series of exits from the White House this month. Secretary of State Rex Tillerson was fired by Trump in a tweet by the president less than 10 days ago and replaced with CIA chief Mike Pompeo. Earlier today, John Dowd, the head of Trump’s Russian investigation legal team, resigned. According to an article in the New York Times, Dowd gave the the president’s refusal to follow his legal advice as his reason for stepping down.
According to an article in Politico, the chaos over exiting personnel at the White House forced Chief of Staff John Kelly to meet with key members of the president’s staff to inform them that no more changes were on the way in the near future. Of course, according to a recent CBS News story, there are swirling rumors that John Kelly himself may soon be on the way out.
I am pleased to announce that, effective 4/9/18, @AmbJohnBolton will be my new National Security Advisor. I am very thankful for the service of General H.R. McMaster who has done an outstanding job & will always remain my friend. There will be an official contact handover on 4/9.— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) March 22, 2018
According to the aforementioned CNN report, Bolton is a controversial choice and is viewed by many in the media and Congress as a “hawk” on defense issues. There are even those inside the White House that worry Bolton’s presence will lead to a greater chance of war with countries like North Korea and Iran. Just three weeks ago, Bolton penned an editorial for the Wall Street Journal laying out the case for a preemptive nuclear strike against the North Korean regime of Kim Jong Un.
As recently as last week, White House spokespeople were ensuring the public and media that there was no truth to the rumors that McMaster was on his way out. According to Politico, however, Trump made the decision to replace McMaster with Bolton earlier this month.
Prominent figures from the worlds of both politics and the media have already taken to Twitter to point out Bolton’s connections to the Bush administration’s war with Iraq and scandal-plagued Cambridge Analytica, as well as a warning for how this decision might affect the nation’s future.
John Bolton was part of the effort to mislead the US into the disastrous Iraq war and has supported military action against North Korea and Iran. He was too extreme to be confirmed as UN ambassador in 2005 and is absolutely the wrong person to be national security advisor now.— Bernie Sanders (@SenSanders) March 22, 2018
The largest funder of John Bolton’s super PAC is Robert Mercer, co-founder of Cambridge Analytica. He’s given Bolton $4 million since 2015. Keep in mind Bolton paid Cambridge Analytica $1.1 million in the same timeframe. #FireBolton pic.twitter.com/zMo5PlpPDA— Scott Dworkin (@funder) March 22, 2018
Imagine if instead of John F. Kennedy during the Cuban Missile Crisis we had Donald Trump and John Bolton.— Eugene Gu, MD (@eugenegu) March 22, 2018
Well now we’ll have a National Security Adviser who wants preemptive strikes on Iran and North Korea—nuclear powder kegs that will draw in Russia and China. This is worse.