Posted tagged ‘John Bolton’

Bolton: Trump’s U.N. Speech the Best of His Presidency

September 19, 2017

Bolton: Trump’s U.N. Speech the Best of His Presidency, Washington Free Beacon, , September 19, 2017

Fox News contributor John Bolton called Donald Trump’s speech before the United Nations Tuesday the best of his young presidency.

Bolton, who served as U.S. Ambassador to the United Nations under President George W. Bush, praised Trump for his direct denunciation of North Korea’s nuclear ambitions and criticism of the Iran nuclear deal brokered by the Obama administration.

“This was the best speech of the Trump presidency, in my view,” Bolton said. “I think he was as clear and direct as it’s possible to be.”

Trump said the U.S. would destroy North Korea if forced to defend itself or its allies; Bolton said that was a memorable line.

“I think it’s safe to say, in the entire history of the United Nations, there has never been a more straightforward criticism of the behavior, the unacceptable behavior of other member states,” Bolton said.

In addition, he said Trump’s critiques of the nuclear deal revealed the White House would not tolerate “half-measures and compromises” that allowed Iran and North Korea to progress to the verge of having deliverable nuclear weapons.

He also praised Trump’s line, which was met with near silence at first, that the collapsing regime in Venezuela was an example of socialism being successfully implemented.

“There are a lot of people in the UN. who have never heard anything like that from an American president,” Bolton said. “I think this was an outstanding speech, and I think it will serve the president very well.”

North Korea’s latest test: More diplomacy will only make matters worse, says Amb. Bolton

September 3, 2017

North Korea’s latest test: More diplomacy will only make matters worse, says Amb. Bolton, Fox Business, September 3, 2017

(Please see also, Powers may end up with Iranian model for NKorea. — DM)

Bolton said the U.S. has “fooled around” with North Korea for 25 years, and if that continues, the current situation will only worsen.

“It would be a lesson to every nuclear state in the world that if you just have patience enough you can wear the United States down. The notion that we can accept North Korea or Iran with any kind of nuclear capability just means that we will forever be at their mercy,” he said.

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Following North Korea’s announcement that it successfully tested a thermonuclear device on Sunday, former U.S. Ambassador to the United Nations John Bolton said more diplomacy will only make matters worse regarding the Hermit Kingdom’s nuclear threat to surrounding countries and America.

“I think the only diplomatic option left is to end the regime in North Korea by effectively having the South take it over,” Bolton told “Sunday Morning Futures.” “Anybody who thinks that more diplomacy with North Korea or sanctions, whether against North Korea or an effort to apply sanctions against China, is just giving North Korea more time to increase its nuclear arsenal, increase its ballistic missile capability, increase the accuracy of its guidance systems and put us, South Korea and Japan in more jeopardy.”

The artificial earthquake caused by the test was “five to six times stronger” than tremors created by previous tests; South Korean officials put the magnitude at 5.7 and the U.S. Geological Survey said it was a magnitude 6.3 Opens a New Window., according to The Associated Press.

In addition to the threat of the country launching a thermonuclear weapon, Bolton explained that the willingness of Kim Jong Un to sell anything for money is also quite worrisome.

“They could sell these weapons, ballistic missiles and the nuclear devices themselves to Iran in a heartbeat. North Korea can sell these devices to terrorist groups around the world; they could be used as electromagnetic pulse weapons (EMPs), not necessarily hitting targets, but destroying our electric grid’s capabilities,” the former ambassador said, adding that they could also be used for nuclear blackmail.

President Trump reacted to the news of the alleged test on Twitter saying, “North Korea is a rogue nation which has become a great threat and embarrassment to China, which is trying to help but with little success.”

..North Korea is a rogue nation which has become a great threat and embarrassment to China, which is trying to help but with little success.

He also criticized South Korea for not taking a tougher stand against the communist country.

South Korea is finding, as I have told them, that their talk of appeasement with North Korea will not work, they only understand one thing!

 

Bolton said the U.S. has “fooled around” with North Korea for 25 years, and if that continues, the current situation will only worsen.

“It would be a lesson to every nuclear state in the world that if you just have patience enough you can wear the United States down. The notion that we can accept North Korea or Iran with any kind of nuclear capability just means that we will forever be at their mercy,” he said.

Former Ambassador John Bolton: Trump Needs to Renegotiate ‘One China’ Policy

February 27, 2017

Former Ambassador John Bolton: Trump Needs to Renegotiate ‘One China’ Policy, Washington Free Beacon, February 27, 2017

Former U.S. Ambassador to the United Nations John Bolton on Friday urged President Donald Trump to upend  four decades of precedent by renegotiating the “One China” policy that denies Taiwan’s sovereignty.

Bolton told the Washington Free Beacon in an exclusive interview that the One China policy, which was established during President Richard Nixon’s visit to China in 1972, is “ahistorical” and fails to reflect the current reality in East Asia, where natives of Taiwan overwhelmingly identify as “Taiwanese” rather than “Chinese.”

“The One China policy is inherently ambiguous,” Bolton said. “China thinks it means one thing, we think it means another.”

Beijing maintains that One China means the People’s Republic of China is the sole legitimate China, encompassing Taiwan.

But the Shanghai Communiqué agreed to by the United States and China explicitly says the United States “acknowledged” that “all Chinese” on either side of the Taiwan Straight believe “there is but one China.” The pact does not deny Taiwan’s sovereignty on its face.

“A clear relationship with both Beijing and Taipei on this would help all concern rather than [having] this phrase which means anything and nothing,” Bolton said.

Earlier in the day, Bolton told an audience at the Conservative Political Action Conference outside of Washington, D.C., that the Trump administration needs to “make clear” there will never be reunification between China and Taiwan without the “express, overwhelming consent” of those living in Taiwan.

“It’s time for constructive clarity,” Bolton said. “We support the people of Taiwan. We support their continued self-government, independent of China.”

Bolton predicted that China will be the top strategic issue facing the United States in the 21st century. He said the president needs to immediately demand that China back down in the South China Sea and the East China Sea.

Bolton also suggested the Trump administration pressure China to pursue Korean reunification to “eliminate” the North Korean regime. He urged the president to end the Iran nuclear deal “as soon as possible” and said the United States needs to renegotiate the New START nuclear arms reduction treaty with Russia so that the United States can rebuild its nuclear deterrent in the face of Moscow’s ongoing treaty violations.

“There’s only one country in the world that’s bound by this treaty—China’s not bound by it, North Korea and Iran aren’t bound by it, theoretically Russia is, but they don’t pay any attention to it,” Bolton said. “There’s only one country that can’t build intermediate-range nuclear forces and that’s us.”

Bolton is a vocal advocate of an expansive U.S. foreign policy that promotes American values abroad. He says the greatest threat to the nation is “self-induced weakness” that was characteristic during the Obama years.

The former ambassador told the Free Beacon he believes Trump would be successful in reversing many of former President Obama’s foreign policy initiatives within his first term, especially if he models his actions after the Reagan administration.

“It took Reagan a substantial amount of time to create a defense expenditure buildup to give us the kinds of military force that we needed to speak from a position of true strength, and I think Trump is going to have to go through the same process with correcting the mistakes of the eight Obama budgets,” Bolton said.

“At the same time, Reagan said right from the beginning that he was going to pursue a very different foreign policy and the political strength of his determination to do that gave us cover while we rebuilt the military and I think Trump should follow that approach too … It would’ve been a lot different if we had a Clinton administration and had not just an eight-year hole to climb out of but a 12-year hole,” he added.

Bolton was a finalist to fill the national security adviser position left open by the resignation of retired Gen. Mike Flynn.

Trump said the administration would ask Bolton to serve in a “somewhat different capacity” after it announced the selection of Lt. Gen. H.R. McMaster for national security adviser on Monday.

“John is a terrific guy. We had some really good meetings with him. Knows a lot,” Trump said from his Mar-a-Lago estate in Florida. “He had a good number of ideas that I must tell you I agree very much with. So we’ll be talking with John Bolton in a different capacity.”

Bolton did not comment on those talks.

The Truth About John Bolton, The Iraq War and WMD Diplomacy

November 23, 2016

The Truth About John Bolton, The Iraq War and WMD Diplomacy, Center for Security Policy, Fred Fleitz, November 23, 2016

bolton1

Source: Breitbart News Network

You’re probably heard the criticism of Ambassador John Bolton by the left that he would not be a good choice to be the next Secretary of State because Bolton was an architect of the Iraq War and a hawk who has little use for diplomacy.

This is completely false. The truth is that Bolton was frozen out of Iraq War planning. This criticism also ignores Bolton’s successful diplomacy as Under Secretary of State for Arms Control and International Security to pressure rogue states to comply with WMD treaties and his work as UN ambassador to take strong and meaningful action in the UN Security Council against WMD proliferation and terrorism.

The record shows John Bolton had little to do with promoting the Iraq war or war planning. Check out the State Department’s archive page of Bolton’s speeches, op-eds in 2002 and early 2003. You won’t find anything calling for military action against Iraq.

Bolton was not involved in any decision-making or planning for the Iraq War because Secretary of State Colin Powell and Deputy Secretary Richard Armitage froze him out. As Bolton’s chief of staff, I witnessed this first hand. I remember well how State Department offices were told by Powell’s and Armitage’s staffs not to share any information with Bolton and his staff about Iraq war planning.

Looking back on this, Bolton believes Powell did him a favor. He says on pages 165-166 of his 2007 book Surrender is Not an Option:

I played no significant decision-making role on Iraq policy, because Powell and Armitage largely excluded me from these issues, no doubt fearing that my views would be similar to Cheney’s and Rumsfeld’s and not their own.  It was the greatest favor Powell ever did for me, utterly unintentionally, to be sure, and my Iraq-related activities were only at the margins of the central decisions.

I believe Bolton’s liberal critics are falsely portraying Bolton as an architect of the Iraq War for two reasons.

First, they want to obscure his successful diplomatic efforts to address cheating on WMD treaties by rogue states. Bolton did this by calling out major violators of treaties to stop the proliferation of weapons of mass destruction like the Nuclear Nonproliferation Treaty and the Biological Weapons Convention.

 Bolton also negotiated the creation of the Proliferation Security Initiative (PSI), a global effort now composed of 103 countries to stop and interdict shipments of WMD technology to rogue states. PSI’s most important success occurred in September 2003 when it led to the inspection of a ship transporting nuclear technology to Libya. This interdiction was a major reason why Libyan leader Muammar Qadaffi decided to give up his WMD programs.

And second, after holding three confirmed foreign policy positions and a reputation for toughness, John Bolton is the last person the foreign policy establishment wants to see leading the State Department. They know he has an intimate knowledge of the State bureaucracy and will exercise the leadership to ensure it implements the president’s policies. The foreign policy establishment is only too aware that no one is better qualified to drain the swamp at State than John Bolton.

In short, the Iraq War architect argument that Bolton’s opponents are using against him is a ruse intended to play on Mr. Trump’s opposition to the Iraq War. I am confident that as President-elect Donald Trump and his team look at John Bolton’s entire record, they will see a man committed to making America safe again with a sophisticated understanding of national security who knows how to be tough and how to use diplomacy.  They also will find someone who will work hard and loyally to bring the Trump revolution to the State Department and the world.

Bolton: Will Obama Apologize For US Destroyer ‘Getting in Way’ of Russian Airplane?

April 15, 2016

Bolton: Will Obama Apologize For US Destroyer ‘Getting in Way’ of Russian Airplane? TownhallCortney O’Brien, April 15, 2016

Bolton

Lt. Col. Ralph Peters (Ret.) was very blunt in his assessment of the incident in the Baltic Sea on Monday, when a Russian warplane buzzed awfully close to a U.S. Navy destroyer.

“I’m very, very worried that in the closing months of Obama’s presidency we’re gonna see American blood,” Peters said in an interview with Fox News.

It was a bold prediction, but one that former Ambassador John Bolton agrees with. During his own conversation on Fox Friday morning, Bolton predicted “there’s more” Russian aggression to come.

“If that airplane had caught a gust of wind, it could have been right up against that destroyer,” the ambassador explained.

Russia’s latest stint in the Baltic Sea signals to our NATO allies that the U.S. can’t take care of itself, he continued.

“I just hope Obama doesn’t apologize for destroyer getting in the way of that airplane.”

Based on the White House’s typical response to foreign intimidation, Bolton’s question is a fair one. Before the Russian airplane flew near our destroyer, Iran captured 10 of our American sailors and celebrated it. Secretary of State John Kerry actually thanked Iran for their compassion during the ordeal. President Obama, meanwhile, continues to defend his nuclear deal with the nation, which has basically given Iran a pass for its bad behavior. A Middle East expert who is very critical of that agreement argues it has severely damaged America’s image as a superpower.

Obama is also no stranger to apologies. He has asked for forgiveness on America’s behalf in about every corner of the globe, it seems. In Argentina last month, he noted the “early dark days” of the CIA and our country’s human rights violations. He continued to express regret over America’s human rights record in Cuba. Yes, Castros’ Cuba, where free speech is suppressed and punished.

Our adversaries are taking advantage of our president’s shows of weakness.

Iran will continue to intimidate us “indefinitely,” Bolton argued, for they know that under Obama, “they will face no consequences.”

A new report indicates that an Iranian general is in Moscow this week to discuss military options with President Putin.

Iran is “going to push the envelope” and “they’ll succeed,” Bolton warned.

Ban Ki-moon, Obama work to Humiliate Israel

October 3, 2015

Ban Ki-moon, Obama work to Humiliate Israel, Breitbart, Pamela Geller, October 3, 2015

GettyImages-490838840-640x480Andrew Burton/Getty Images

There has been such a mass (or maybe mess is more fitting) of bad news this week that it is not surprising that a number of shocking news items fell through the cracks — which is always the case with the running dogs in the media when the news reflects so very dreadfully on the community organizer in the White House.

Barack Obama was upstaged, upended and usurped by Russia’s Vladimir Putin this week, when, in one fell swoop, by his actions in Syria and speech at the United Nations, Putin took over the leadership role in the Middle East. Once again, Obama was “caught off guard.” That has become the rallying cry of his presidency.

Obama’s response? To further humiliate and denigrate our one steadfast and true ally.

Breitbart News reported that Obama actually went so far as to call Secretary of State John Kerry and the U.S. Ambassador to the United Nations, Samantha Power, into a video conference just before Israel’s Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu delivered his historic and courageous speech to the UN General Assembly last Thursday.

The remnants of the U.S. delegation that did attend the speech pointedly did not applaud. The lowlife administration struck again. Obama was casting pearls before swine.

UN Secretary General Ban Ki-moon broke protocol and summarily left when Netanyahu came to the lectern. Deputy UNSG Jan Eliasson slipped into the chair. The UN Secretary General is always present when a head of state addresses the General Assembly. But they broke the rule to humiliate the Jewish people. He left. There is no way that Ban Ki-moon would have shown such disrespect had he not been given the idea or, at the very least, the sanction, by the Jew-hater in the White House.

Why? Why would Obama publicly snub our tried and true ally in the hottest region in the world? Because he is evil. He embodies the hatred of the good for being the good.

Meanwhile, Vladimir Putin has seized the initiative. After announcing that it was beginning operations against the Islamic State (ISIS), Russia is bombing our allies, Bashar Assad’s enemies, in Syria — not ISIS at all. “It’s one thing for us to be humiliated, but another for it to be shown to the world,” said Charles Krauthammer.

Put a fork in him: Barack Obama is done, and he has taken the United States, our allies, and freedom-loving peoples around the world with him. Now that Putin has so thoroughly shown him up, Obama’s only option now is to grovel. And he is groveling assiduously.

Obama’s surrender to the Russians this week has overturned the order of the Middle East and, by extension, the order of the entire world. He relinquished American hegemony in the Middle East–right after paving the way for a nuclear Iran. Obama’s subordinate role to the Russians in the “deconfliction” talks was stunning. Putin had Obama begging for “deconfliction” talks–and how quickly he turned over the deconfliction codes!

Deconfliction codes keep aircraft or missions apart to reduce the likelihood of so-called friendly fire. Has America ever done that before? According to Daniel Dombey in the Financial Times: “Two prior administrations, one of which was seen to be extraordinarily favourably disposed toward anything Israel, declined to do that.” That is, they declined to turn over the deconfliction codes to Israel at the start of the American invasion of the Iraq war and later. But when Russia demanded them, Obama jumped.

I don’t think that Bashar Assad should go. I never have. He kept the Christian and religious minorities safe, and if he goes, the Islamic State is the primary force in place to benefit from his fall. On Assad’s remaining in power as a bulwark against the Islamic State, Putin is right. Even a broken clock is right twice a day.

But this is much bigger than Assad. Obama’s turning the Middle East over to Russia and Iran is one of those terrible moments in history that you can point to, shaking your head in horror and saying, “If only…” Turning over the Middle East to Russia is a major historical blunder. That said, Putin is killing jihadists. Obama whines that Putin is killing the “opposition,” “our allies.” Who is Russia bombing? The 5 recruits that cost the US 500 million to train? “Moderate al Qaeda”? Jabhat al Nusra? #silverlining

The build-out of the Russian air base at Latakia has Russia flexing its muscles. Previously, Israel had a fairly free hand to carry out strikes against arms shipments that go from Iran through Syria to the Iranian-backed jihad group Hizb’Allah in Lebanon. But now the Russian presence in Syria severely limits Israel’s freedom of action.

What the future might hold as a result of Obama’s fecklessness, perfidy, and betrayal of Israel is anyone’s guess, but the catastrophic consequences of the Russia-Iran-Syria axis are far-reaching. The Islamic State is likely not only to survive, but to grow–and Ambassador John Bolton predicts that Putin and Iran’s Hassan Rouhani will eventually make a deal with them, reaching a modus vivendi with the Islamic State.

Catastrophe upon catastrophe, all courtesy of Barack Hussein Obama.

Op-Ed The consequences of a bad deal with Iran

July 26, 2015

Op-Ed The consequences of a bad deal with Iran, LA Times, John Bolton, July 26, 2015

American weakness has brought us to this difficult moment. While we obsessed about its economic discomfort, Iran wore its duress with pride. It was never an even match. We now have to rely on a tiny ally to do the job for us. But unless we are ready to accept a nuclear Iran (and, in relatively short order, several other nuclear Middle Eastern states), get ready. The easy ways out disappeared long ago.

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President Obama has made an art form of attacking his opponents rather than substantively defending his own policies, most recently regarding the Vienna agreement on Iran’s nuclear program. Essentially, Obama argues that we must either accept his wretched deal or go to war to prevent Iran from acquiring nuclear weapons.

As is typical, Obama posits the wrong choice, apparently to distract from the unpleasant reality that the agreement won’t work. It will not prevent Iran from getting nuclear weapons. So the real choice we are faced with is dealing with the consequences of military action or the consequences of a nuclear Iran. Neither is palatable, but the latter is far worse. If the real objective is stopping Iran from getting nuclear weapons, preemptive military action is now inescapable.

This rock-and-hard-place outcome has long been foreseeable. Iran’s dogged determination to become a nuclear-weapons state was fiercer and stronger than the West’s frail response. Assuming Iran scrupulously complies with every provision agreed to in Vienna — an absurdly unlikely scenario given the ayatollahs’ objectives and history — its ambitions for nuclear weapons will simply have been delayed eight to 10 years.

In all likelihood, the ayatollahs are already at work violating the accords. After all, Iran has systematically breached its voluntarily-assumed obligations under the Nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty for more than 30 years. Now the president’s deal will allow Iran to keep the fruits of its violations. Yes, the deal includes restrictions on uranium enrichment, but Tehran can retain its enrichment program, with guaranteed international assistance in improving it. These concessions are fatal mistakes.

Moreover, Iran’s ballistic missile efforts — its development of the means to deliver nuclear weapons all over the world — will barely be touched. Nor does the deal in any way address Iran’s clandestine weaponization efforts, which it has denied and hidden from the International Atomic Energy Agency with great skill.

Last week, the news that the administration has not even seen the texts of two agreements between the energy agency and Iran, both crucial to implementation of the Vienna accords, only raises further doubts. President Obama must provide the texts of these “side deals” to Congress before any serious consideration of the overall agreement is possible.

Some critics of Obama’s plan advocate scuttling the deal and increasing economic sanctions against Iran instead. They are dreaming. Iran and the United States’ negotiating partners have already signed the accords and are straining at their leashes to implement them. There will be no other “better deal.” Arguments about what Obama squandered or surrendered along the way are therefore fruitless. As for sanctions, they were already too weak to prevent Iran’s progress toward the bomb, and they will not be reset now. To paraphrase Bruce Springsteen, “These sanctions are going boys, and they ain’t coming back.”

Patrick Clawson, the director for research at the Washington Institute for Near East Policy, provided the most recent thumbs-down assessment of sanctions: “Iran has muddled through the shock of the sanctions imposed in 2012, and its structural [economic] problems are not particularly severe compared to those of other countries.” He estimates Iran’s nuclear and terrorism-support programs to cost only about $10 billion annually. No wonder administration officials have testified that sanctions (including those imposed piecemeal before 2012) did not slow Iran’s nuclear efforts.

Nor will the deal’s “snapback” mechanism (intended to coerce Iran back into compliance if it breaches its obligations) change that reality. Tehran’s belligerent response is expressly stated in the agreement’s text: “If sanctions are reinstated in whole or in part, Iran will treat that as grounds to cease performing its commitments … in whole or in part.” Tehran does risk losing some future economic benefits should sanctions snap back, but by then it will have already cashed in the assets the deal unfreezes and signed new lucrative trade and investment contracts.

Once those benefits begin flowing all around, the pressure on world governments will only increase to ignore Iranian violations, or to treat them as minor or inadvertent, certainly not warranting the reimposition of major sanctions. The ayatollahs have dusted off Lenin’s barb that “the capitalists will sell us the rope with which we will hang them,” and applied it to the age of nuclear proliferation.

If diplomacy and sanctions have failed to stop Iran, diplomacy alone will fail worse. Like it or not, we now face this unpleasant reality: Iran probably will violate the deal; it may not be detected doing so and if detected, it will not be deterred by “snapback” sanctions. So we return to the hard question: Are we prepared to do what will be necessary to stop Iran from getting nuclear weapons?

Obama most certainly is not, which means the spotlight today is on Israel.

If Israel strikes, there will be no general Middle East war, despite fears to the contrary. We know this because no general war broke out when Israel attacked Saddam Hussein’s Osirak reactor in 1981, or when it attacked the North Korean-built Syrian reactor in 2007. Neither Saudi Arabia nor other oil-producing monarchies wanted those regimes to have nuclear weapons, and they certainly do not want Iran to have them today.

However, Iran may well retaliate. At that point, Washington must be ready to immediately resupply Israel for losses incurred by its armed forces in the initial attack, so that Israel will still be able to effectively counter Tehran’s proxies, Hamas and Hezbollah, which will be its vehicles for retaliation. The United States must also provide muscular political support, explaining that Israel legitimately exercised its inherent right of self-defense. Whatever Obama’s view, public and congressional support for Israel will be overwhelming.

American weakness has brought us to this difficult moment. While we obsessed about its economic discomfort, Iran wore its duress with pride. It was never an even match. We now have to rely on a tiny ally to do the job for us. But unless we are ready to accept a nuclear Iran (and, in relatively short order, several other nuclear Middle Eastern states), get ready. The easy ways out disappeared long ago.