Center for American Progress

STATEMENT: Appointment of John Bolton Creates Prospect of More Wars, CAP’s Kelly Magsamen Says
Press Statement

STATEMENT: Appointment of John Bolton Creates Prospect of More Wars, CAP’s Kelly Magsamen Says

Washington, D.C. — Following President Donald Trump’s announcement that he would appoint John Bolton as national security adviser, Kelly Magsamen, vice president for National Security and International Policy at the Center for American Progress, issued the following statement:

The appointment of John Bolton as national security adviser puts America on the precipice of even more war. Bolton is a reckless fearmonger and ideologue who believes war is always the answer. He still thinks the calamitous war in Iraq was a good idea. He advocates a preventive military strike on North Korea that could kill hundreds of thousands of people or spark a nuclear strike.

Bolton believes war, not diplomacy, is the best option with Iran. With no backup plan other than war, he will encourage President Trump’s desire to tear up the agreement that stopped Iran’s nuclear program. Bolton even called Russia “a new force for democracy” and urged Russians to adopt their own right to bear arms. It’s no wonder Bolton was too extreme to be confirmed as U.N. ambassador by a Republican Congress during the Bush administration.

In less than a month, President Trump has replaced his national security adviser, secretary of state, and director of the National Economic Council. Trump will now make critical decisions on North Korea and Iran—that could lead to war—with an untested team of known extremists, including his nominee for secretary of state, Mike Pompeo. Bolton and Pompeo will not enhance America’s national security; together, they may take us into more unnecessary wars.

Congress cannot stop Bolton from entering the White House, but the Senate should block the nomination of Pompeo to be secretary of state. Congress should also assert its powers to limit the president from launching any new wars of choice.

For more information on this topic or to speak with an expert, please contact Sam Hananel at [email protected] or 202.478.6327.