President Trump's next national security adviser, John Bolton, is best remembered for his role in former President George W. Bush's administration, where he advocated for the Iraq War and became U.S. ambassador to the United Nations as a recess appointment, after the Republican-controlled Senate was unable to confirm him.
Trump announced Thursday on Twitter that Bolton is replacing H.R. McMaster, effective April 9. A hawk on North Korea and Iran, Bolton wrote a column for The Wall Street Journal in late February titled, "The Legal Case for Striking North Korea First," and in January he told Fox Business host Maria Bartiromo that "talking to North Koreans is a waste of time." Bolton has been highly critical of former President Barack Obama's nuclear deal with Iran, and in 2015 he wrote an op-ed for The New York Times which stated that a U.S. or Israeli airstrike on Iranian nuclear facilities would be a good thing. "Time is terribly short, but a strike can still succeed," he wrote. "Such action should be combined with vigorous American support for Iran's opposition, aimed at regime change in Tehran."
Throughout his presidential campaign, Trump said he was against the Iraq War, which Bolton pushed. Under Bush, Bolton was undersecretary of state for arms control, and he argued that Iraq had weapons of mass destruction. His staff also wrote a speech claiming that Cuba had an active biological weapons program, and when the State Department's lead bioweapons analyst refused to sign off on this false claim, Bolton screamed at him, Vox reports. That wasn't an isolated incident — several people who worked with Bolton have accused him of yelling at and threatening those who disagreed with him. Catherine Garcia