- The Washington Times - Tuesday, January 28, 2020

Former Trump National Security Adviser John R. Bolton is stabbing the president and the presidency itself in the back by publishing a tell-all book before the November elections.

As much for personal and ideological revenge as for making piles of money, Mr. Bolton chose to relay what he claims President Trump said in what Mr. Trump meant to be completely private conversations with his national security adviser.

A president who can’t trust his national security adviser is vulnerable to deception.

A national security adviser who can’t be trusted is a threat to the republic.

Mr. Bolton’s deed brings no dignity to himself or to the republic.

Mr. Bolton did the deed by leaking a tell-all book ahead of the Nov. 3 elections that will either give Mr. Trump four more years or replace him with a Democrat who thinks illegal immigration shouldn’t be illegal.

And who thinks that the rhetoric of compassion and generosity that caters to every desire is all that’s needed to endlessly replenish the nation’s treasury.

Although a long-time friend of mine, Mr. Bolton favors regime change by whatever means necessary. I don’t. Mr. Trump has said many times over that he doesn’t, either.

Mr. Bolton and I could still be friends. But Mr. Trump never quite got a handle on the worldview of the players in the theater of national politics. So he erred badly and inexplicably in naming Mr. Bolton to head the National Security Council.

And now the Donald is paying for it.

This was all so dismally predictable.

Equally dismal and predictable is that Mr. Bolton’s war hawk brothers-in-arms who also claim to be Mr. Trump’s champions will continue their devious work.

That work is to make Mr. Trump’s foreign policy look as indefensibly meddlesome and warlike as that of Sen. Lindsey Graham, Secretary of State Mike Pompeo and the late Sen. John McCain — three hides from the same warrior tribe.

Why has no one picked up on what should be an alarming reality; namely, that Mr. Trump, as canny as he is, somehow hired Brutuses to advise him on foreign policy.

These are the people tasked with making sure the foreign policy they carry out is not theirs but Mr. Trump’s.

Which explains why in year four of the Trump presidency the U.S. still has its fighting men and women in Iraq, Afghanistan, Syria, Somalia, Kenya, not to mention CIA-Special Forces secret operations across the globe.

The late McCain intensely disliked Mr. Trump for just about everything. The Arizona senator especially disliked Mr. Trump for his skepticism about the penchant of the political, military and industrial complex for solving every imagined and imaginable problem with munitions and men in uniform.

And for creating problems for which such means would be employed.

McCain was like a brother to Mr. Graham, who is one of the smartest men and wiliest operators in Washington.

For the liberal press, Mr. Graham became the go-to defender of Mr. Trump on Capitol Hill. After all, according to said press, Mr. Graham is a conservative but — holy moly! — like McCain, a relatively honest one.

For traditional, freedom-first conservatives, McCain was no more one of them than Mr. Graham or Mr. Pompeo. Or Mr. Bolton.

My fear is that if Mr. Bolton isn’t Mr. Trump’s undoing, then Mr. Graham and Mr. Pompeo will be.

Everything now points to the reasonable likelihood that a successful two-term Trump presidency will make possible a successful 21st century for the United States.

The mission — and its obstacles — could not be clearer.

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