John Bolton’s appointment as President Donald Trump’s national security adviser will trigger a chain reaction of change, according to a recent report.
Bolton was tapped by Trump on Thursday to replace H.R. McMaster, who was appointed to the post in early 2017 after the forced resignation of Michael Flynn, Trump’s initial pick for the job.
The publication Foreign Policy, in a report that draws on unnamed sources, said that Bolton will be ridding the National Security Council of several current White House staffers, including some who were first appointed during the Obama administration.
Although the report quoted what it said were sources close to Bolton as saying it was too soon to discuss staff changes, Foreign Policy quoted other unnamed sources that offered a very different perspective.
Bolton “can and will clean house,” the report quoted one source as saying, while another said that “political appointees” from the McMaster era would be removed.
As existing NSC staff may face the prospect of losing their posts, another group may be returning to prominence.
Foreign Policy quoted sources that said former insiders who were loyal to Flynn are working to restore their influence.
In its reporting on Bolton’s appointment, Politico quoted unnamed sources as saying that the future would be more likely to see new faces coming in rather than a series of departures of existing staff.
The New York Times reported that part of Bolton’s assignment in his new post is to stop the leaks, but it is unclear if this would lead to wholesale staff changes.
Bolton himself has made no secret that he believes insiders who leak information should be removed.
— Washington Examiner (@dcexaminer) March 23, 2018
“It’s completely unacceptable,” Bolton said Thursday, according to the Washington Examiner. “You cannot conduct diplomacy … if some munchkin in the executive branch decided they are going to leak.”
“It’s not for them to put in jeopardy the other 300 plus million American citizens just because they think their morality is better than everybody else’s,” Bolton said.
According to Politico, he also said, “This is really a terrible reflection on the individual or individuals that did this.”
“They should be ashamed of themselves. I think, whether you’re a Republican or a Democrat, a liberal or conservative, there ought to be unity that leaking of that sort is simply unacceptable.”
Bolton’s appointment followed a leak from the White House that revealed Trump was told by his national security staff not to congratulate Russian President Vladimir Putin on his election, something that Trump did when the two men spoke by telephone on Tuesday.
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