What Bolton’s ouster says about Trump

By

Opinion

September 11, 2019 - 10:16 AM

President Donald Trump and John Bolton

Of the questions surrounding the defenestration of John Bolton as President Trump’s third national security adviser — Did he jump? Was he shoved? — the least interesting is the question of who will succeed him on the parapet.

It’s unlikely to matter much. Regardless of who has advised Mr. Trump on foreign affairs — generals and corporate tycoons, seasoned pros and amateurs — all have proved powerless before a zest for chaos that would have thwarted George Marshall.

Even when Mr. Trump has pursued worthy goals — trying to persuade North Korea’s dictator to give up his nuclear weapons, negotiating with the Taliban so American troops can leave Afghanistan — his mercurial, impatient, crisis-driven approach has often backfired, no matter who was advising him.

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