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Trump Fires National Security Adviser over ‘Strong Disagreements’

Trump Fires National Security Adviser over ‘Strong Disagreements’

Tuesday, 10 September, 2019 - 17:15
President Donald Trump listens as his national security adviser John Bolton speaks in the Oval Office at the White House in Washington, US, February 7, 2019. (Reuters)
Asharq Al-Awsat
US President Donald Trump sacked on Tuesday national security adviser, John Bolton, citing “strong disagreements” over policy issues.

"I asked John for his resignation, which was given to me this morning," Trump announced on Twitter.

"I informed John Bolton last night that his services are no longer needed at the White House," Trump wrote, saying he would name a replacement next week.

Bolton responded in a tweet of his own that he offered to resign Monday "and President Trump said, 'Let's talk about it tomorrow.'"

Trump said that he "disagreed strongly" with many of Bolton's suggestions, "as did others in the administration."

Bolton's ouster came as a surprise to many in the White House. Just an hour before Trump's tweet, the press office announced that Bolton would join Secretary of State Mike Pompeo and Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin in a briefing.

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.

He espoused hawkish foreign policy views dating back to the Reagan administration and became a household name over his vociferous support for the Iraq War as the US ambassador to the UN under George W. Bush.

Bolton even briefly considered running for president in 2016, in part to make the case against the isolationism that Trump would come to embody.

Inside the administration he advocated caution on the president's whirlwind rapprochement with North Korea and against Trump's decision last year to pull US troops out of Syria.

He masterminded a quiet campaign inside the administration and with allies abroad to convince Trump to keep US forces in Syria to counter the remnants of the ISIS and Iranian influence in the region.

Bolton was named Trump's third national security adviser in April 2018 after the departure of Army General H.R. McMaster.

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