Former White House national security adviser John BoltonJohn BoltonSunday shows preview: Biden team gears up for transition, Trump legal battles continue and pandemic rages on Heads roll as Trump launches post-election purge Hillicon Valley: Four major tech issues facing the Biden administration | Pressure grows to reinstate White House cyber czar | Facebook, Google to extend political ad bans MORE said Sunday that the firing and resignations of several top Pentagon officials in the days following President TrumpDonald John TrumpViolence erupts between counter-protestors, Trump supporters following DC rally Biden considering King for director of national intelligence: report Here are the 17 GOP women newly elected to the House this year MORE‘s loss to President-elect Joe BidenJoe BidenViolence erupts between counter-protestors, Trump supporters following DC rally Biden considering King for director of national intelligence: report Here are the 17 GOP women newly elected to the House this year MORE in the 2020 election was “destructive” and would hamstring not only Biden’s administration but Trump’s as well.
In an interview with ABC’s “This Week,” the former Trump aide who has become a top critic of the president in recent months sounded off on the firing of Defense Secretary Mark EsperMark EsperThe special peril of this transition New Defense chief signals potential troop drawdown: ‘All wars must end’ Heads roll as Trump launches post-election purge MORE and the replacement of a number of top Defense Department officials.
“[I]t’s destructive. I mean, when you decapitate the office of the Secretary of Defense with less than ten weeks to go in the administration, really it’s…it’s very damaging, not just for the current administration, but for the incoming administration as well,” said Bolton.
The comments come as Democratic critics of the president have reacted with confusion and alarm to the president’s shakeup of top Pentagon officials beginning just days after the election, while speculation has swirled as to whether the president was planning a major military-related action in the days ahead.
White House officials did not immediately returned a request for comment on Bolton’s remarks.
The president and his allies have dismissed Bolton’s criticism as that of a disgruntled ex-employee for months, event as the Justice Department sought for months earlier this year to block the publication of Bolton’s memoir, which characterized the president as “stunningly uninformed” about world affairs.
Trump fired back at his former aide in a tweet Sunday afternoon, accusing Bolton of bringing nothing to the White House but calls for war.
“John Bolton was one of the dumbest people in government that I’ve had the “pleasure” to work with. A sullen, dull and quiet guy, he added nothing to National Security except, ‘Gee, let’s go to war.’ Also, illegally released much Classified Information,” wrote Trump.
John Bolton was one of the dumbest people in government that I’ve had the “pleasure” to work with. A sullen, dull and quiet guy, he added nothing to National Security except, “Gee, let’s go to war.” Also, illegally released much Classified Information. A real dope!
— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) November 15, 2020