Trump’s latest picks continue to be awful
To replace departing National Security Advisor H. R. McMaster, President Trump has appointed a man who has made a career out of being a hardline, reactionary conservative, with his actions speaking much louder than words.
His name is John Robert Bolton, and if the fact that he is a Fox News contributor doesn’t scare you, this next part will. He is a warhawk, famous for championing (and continuing to champion) the Iraq War, as well as current military conflicts in Syria and Libya amongst other countries. This, despite the fact that he was a Vietnam War draft dodger who hid in the national guard while real heroes like John McCain, Robert Mueller, and millions of other Americans served in the war honorably.
But this is just the tip of the iceberg. Thanks to strong journalistic work from The Intercept’s Lee Fang, we also know about the pro-GOP groups that Bolton is a high-ranking part of, including the American Enterprise Institute, a think tank infamous for parroting Iraq War propaganda; the John Bolton Super PAC, a political action committee that has raised millions of dollars for corrupt Republican candidates, and the Gatestone Institute. He was also a member of the infamous Project For A New American Century, the organization that morphed into the George W. Bush administration and brought us the disasters of that era.
The Gatestone Institute is unfortunately the most troubling in today’s context because, as National Security Advisor, Bolton will have a lot of influence on domestic security policies, and since its inception in 2008, the Gatestone Institute has done nothing but publish misleading information demonizing Muslims.
Islamic terrorism is a major problem in the world, but pushing hoaxes and misinformation only stokes irrational fear towards innocent people as a whole, which is exactly what Bolton has allowed as Chairman of Gatestone. For example, the fact-checking site Snopes pointed out in November 2016 that a newsflash from Gatestone’s website lied about the European Union wanting to censor any British reports of terrorism conducted by Muslims, no doubt done by Gatestone to garner support for the controversial Brexit decision in June 2016.
Not only that, but in late September 2017, Fang reported on Gatestone publishing an influx of xenophobic stories to stoke fear of migrants during the 2017 German Elections.
When Trump made his initial Cabinet picks, criticism was directed at most of them for their cronyism and apparent incompetence. However, with many of them leaving either directly or indirectly because of him, replacements have had to be put forward, and the results are horrifying.
Mike Pompeo, a Tea Party nut, will be nominated as the new Secretary of State following Rex Tillerson’s departure, while Gina Haspel, a torturer and war criminal, has been nominated for Director of the CIA. Bolton may not be as bad as her, but his status as a chickenhawk hate-monger makes him a danger to the U.S. Government.
Trump’s government is becoming more and more extremist and alarming by the day. But appointing a cheerleader for pre-emptive war — including pre-emptive nuclear war — like John Bolton to such a powerful position like National Security Adviser is the most frightening thing Trump has done yet.