by Elias J. Atienza
John Bolton, the former US Ambassador to the United Nations, will be nominated by the Trump administration for Deputy Secretary of State according to NBC News.
Bolton is known for being a neoconservative hawk who still believes that the Iraq War was the right decision, saying in 2015:
“I still think the decision to overthrow Saddam was correct. I think decisions made after that decision were wrong, although I think the worst decision made after that was the 2011 decision to withdraw U.S. and coalition forces. The people who say, ‘Oh, things would have been much better if you didn’t overthrow Saddam,’ miss the point that today’s Middle East does not flow totally and unchangeably from the decision to overthrow Saddam alone.”
In addition, Bolton has been for regime change in Iran, Libya, and Syria.
The Deputy Secretary of State is the second highest position in the State Department and if the Secretary of State dies or resigns, they take over until the Senate can confirm another appointee.
Senator Rand Paul (R-Ky) has noted his opposition to John Bolton on many occasions and it would be interesting to see how Paul will react to Trump going for Bolton as the Deputy Secretary of State instead of the Secretary of State.
Donald Trump chose Exxon Mobile CEO Rex Tillerson as Secretary of State.
The current Deputy Secretary of State is Tony Blinken.