Donald Trump has lambasted John Bolton in a tweet posted on Sunday, citing issues he has experienced with his former national security advisor and calling him a "real dope".
While being a "quiet guy" on the outside, Bolton, who has proved himself as one of the most hawkish officials in the Trump administration, has pursued an aggressive foreign policy, Trump said.
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
Trump also mentioned classified material in reference to Bolton's memoir, The Room Where it Happened: A White House Memoir, that describes his tenure in the Trump administration. The White House unsuccessfully tried to block the publication of the book, citing security concerns over the "unauthorised disclosure of classified information".
In his memoir, Bolton depicts Trump as a president who was easily manipulated by the leaders of China, Russia, Turkey, and even North Korea. Trump has slammed the book as "a compilation of lies and made-up stories", suggesting it was an attempt to get revenge for his sacking.
Bolton’s book, which is getting terrible reviews, is a compilation of lies and made up stories, all intended to make me look bad. Many of the ridiculous statements he attributes to me were never made, pure fiction. Just trying to get even for firing him like the sick puppy he is!— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) June 18, 2020
Prior to the book's publication, media reported that the leaked excerpts from it hinted that Trump allegedly tried to exert pressure on Kiev into investigating potential corruption crimes by ex-vice president Joe Biden and his son, Hunter, while the latter served at the board of the oil company Burisma in Ukraine. The excerpts were leaked right as the House Democrats were pushing efforts to impeach Trump over alleged abuse of power.
Trump dismissed Bolton in September 2019 following failed negotiations between the US and the Taliban. The president said in a tweet he "disagreed strongly with many of his suggestions, as did others in the administration".
While serving in the Trump administration, Bolton pushed for toughening policies towards a number of states, including deepening US involvement in Venezuela's affairs and strengthening pressure on Iran and North Korea. Trump said in January that if he ever listened to what Bolton said the United States "would be in World War Six by now".