In mid-January, President Donald Trump’s national security adviser, John Bolton, took a call from the boss. “Did you see the tweet?” the president asked Bolton.Story Continued Below A few minutes earlier, Trump had casually threatened to “devastate Turkey economically” should it defy his warnings not to attack Kurdish fighters in Syria allied with the United States. Bolton saw the tweet before taking the call, though he didn’t know it was coming. Normally a threat against a NATO ally by an American president would rattle any top White House aide. But for Bolton it meant vindication. He had just returned from a tumultuous trip to Turkey, during which he stood accused of losing Turkish cooperation against ISIS and undermining Trump’s plans for a troop withdrawal from Syria. Some foreign policy pundits were even murmuring that Trump’s third national security adviser might not even reach the one-year mark of his tenure, a familiar parlor game in Washington in the Trump era. But in his nine months on the job, Bolton has learned to expect the unexpected from President Trump. It was only a few weeks earlier, in mid-December, that the president shocked his national security team — and prompted the resignation of… Read full this story
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