Who Is the Real 'Moron' Here?

May 1, 2019
National Security Advisor John Bolton. Photo: Gage Skidmore

President Donald Trump's National Security Advisor John Bolton thinks Trump is "a moron," Bolton's former aide for 15 years, Mark Groombridge, told the New Yorker. The magazine titled its long profile of Bolton, published online Tuesday, "John Bolton on the Warpath: Can Trump's National Security Adviser Sell the Isolationist President on Military Force?"

Groombridge told the New Yorker that when he briefs the President, "John is thinking, `To the extent I can modify or mollify the President's actions, I will.' He is truly a patriot. But I wonder how he goes into work every day, because deep in his heart he believes the President is a moron."

Bolton felt it advisable to take time off from tweeting support for Venezuela opposition leader Juan Guaidó's attempted coup d'état today, to answer Groombridge's story. "A recent article quoted an embittered former employee whom I haven't seen or spoken to in several years. He has no knowledge of my thinking. His remarks are contrary to my views, and completely off the mark. The reporter never asked for comment," he tweeted.

The conflict between the President and Bolton portrayed in the New Yorker article is summed up in the statement from some unnamed Western diplomat: "The trouble for Bolton is, Trump does not want war. He does not want to launch military operations."

An unnamed former official who worked with Bolton is cited: "Bolton has a Hobbesian view of the universe—life is nasty, brutish, and short."

Bolton expressed his bestial view of humanity himself in a December 2009 interview with Fox News: "Homo sapiens are hard-wired for violent conflict, and we're not going to eliminate violent conflict until Homo sapiens ceases to exist as a separate species. And the whole notion you could even think about eliminating it, not just in our lifetime but soon thereafter, I think reveals a fundamental misunderstanding of human nature."