Trump picks third national security adviser in 15 months; preparation on for Kim talks?
The Donald Trump administration saw its third national security adviser taking office in a span of 15 months as the president on Thursday, March 22, announced former US ambassador to the United Nations John Bolton as the replacement of Lt Gen HR McMaster, a war veteran who assumed office in February last year to succeed Michael Flynn.
It has been reported in the American media that McMaster though was expected to give stability to the US's turbulent foreign policy operations, he did not quite succeed in growing a steady relationship with President Trump.
After Pompeo, it's Bolton: Trump administration turns more hawkish
Bolton's inclusion means Washington is set to take a more hawkish foreign policy stance for the man backs military action and has sought steps against Iran and North Korea - two of the US's biggest enemies at the moment. Bolton's appointment comes in the wake of the replacement of Rex Tillerson as the secretary of state by CIA director Mike Pompeo, a former army officer who is also known for his hardline stand on North Korea and Iran.
According to observers, the inclusion of Pompeo and Bolton indicate at the Trump administration's hard preparation ahead of the president's talks with North Korean leader Kim Jong-un scheduled by end of May.
Macmaster, who is on the verge of retirement, had spoken his exit with Trump over a period of time and the latter wanted to get his replacement in before the crucial talks with Kim. Bolton has also been in regular contact with Trump to discuss foreign policy issues and will take his office on April 9. Trump initially had a disliking for Bolton's moustache, as a New York Times report said, but acted promptly when it came to finding a replacement for McMaster. It even left Bolton surprised.
Trump picked McMaster in February last year, just a month after taking the oath. He replaced Flynn, the first incumbent, for not being direct about a conversation with the ambassador of Russia. Flynn later pleaded guilty to making a false statement to the FBI authorities and is now working with a special counsel probing the Kremlin's interference in the 2016 presidential election.
Republicans happy with Bolton's pick; Democrats not
While the Republicans welcomed the decision to appoint Bolton as the national security adviser saying it was bad news for Washington's foes for the man has a decent grip on issues related to Iran, North Korea and radical Islam, the Democrats were not so pleased. They fear the Bolton era could see the US launching war against the hostile regimes in Tehran and Pyongyang without caring much about the Congress's ratification.