One of the many reasons I voted for Trump—beyond his attitude, of course, which will always be the main reason—was that he realized America’s military forays into the Middle East were disastrously stupid.
As far back as 2006 he said that “Bush will go down as the worst and by far the dumbest president in history.” In 2013 he tweeted that “Iraq was a waste of blood and treasure.” During a 2015 Republican debate, he told voters:
We’ve spent $4 trillion trying to topple various people that, frankly, if they were there and if we could have spent that $4 trillion in the United States to fix our roads, our bridges, and all of the other problems—our airports and all the other problems we have—we would have been a lot better off, I can tell you that right now. We have done a tremendous disservice not only to the Middle East—we’ve done a tremendous disservice to humanity. The people that have been killed, the people that have been wiped away—and for what?…It’s not like we had victory….It’s a mess.
During his campaign, Trump seemed to understand the difference between nationalism and internationalism, and he had no fondness for the latter. Again and again he promised not to get us in “any more stupid wars.”
And it was his resistance to being dragged into the endlessly costly and absolutely unnecessary neocon wars that caused the GOP establishment to oppose him even more ferociously than the Democrats did.
That’s why it was such a mega-bummer for me back in April when Trump decided to cast all that campaign rhetoric aside and bomb Syria.
And now he has to go and make things worse by appointing that warmongering walrus John Bolton as his National Security Advisor despite some perfectly understandable initial reservations about the man’s mustache?
John Bolton, that deservedly loathed botfly from the Bush Jr. Administration, is back, and he’s ready to kick ass—provided, but of course, that he doesn’t have to personally do any of the ass-kicking. Bolton and his giant 70s’ porno “flavor saver” mustache seem ready, willing, and ready almost to the point of premature ejaculation to bomb the rest of the world into oblivion in order to, um, protect “America’s interests.” He’s something beyond trigger-happy—he’s bomb-happy. He is the incarnation of Slim Pickens in Dr. Strangelove except, as I intimated before, he probably doesn’t have the guts to ride the bomb itself like a cowboy on a bucking bronco.
Our new National Security Advisor is the guy who’s written such tender think pieces as “To Stop Iran’s Bomb, Bomb Iran” and “The Legal Case for Striking North Korea First,” which was published only last month and might be a bit concerning seeing as how, you know, we already have a whole situation with North Korea.
This is one of the main charlatans who sold the public the whole “weapons of mass destruction” lie that dragged us into Iraq, but Bolton’s bloodlust extended even further than Bush or Cheney’s—he urged the US flex its muscles “Beyond the Axis of Evil” and bomb Cuba, Libya, and Syria into smithereens, too. To this day, Bolton remains one of the five or so people on Earth who don’t think the Iraq War was a colossal mistake.
Despite the fact that I don’t think he’s ever done anything the neocons have disapproved of, Bolton insists he’s not a neocon because his mission isn’t to “spread democracy.” Apparently, his mission is merely to bomb the shit out of other places on the taxpayers’ dime.
And what countries does our new protector of our national security see as a looming threat that may need a few bombs to set them straight? Oh, only a handful:
Russia, China, Syria, Iran, North Korea. These are regimes that make agreements and lie about them. A national security policy that is based on the faith that regimes like that will honor their commitments is doomed to failure.
A man who likely would have approved—or even ordered—the Pearl Harbor bombing if he were Japanese, Bolton has over his career agitated for “preemptive” strategy against Iraq, Iran, Korea, and Libya. And in stark contrast with Trump—who during his campaign took the eminently defensible position that it’d be better for all concerned if Russia were our ally rather than an enemy, Bolton has advised in the past that we should make the Russians “feel pain.”