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Sidelined Bolton becomes foe of Afghan peace deal

Sidelined Bolton becomes foe of Afghan peace deal

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Aug 31, 2019 - 15:48

KABULinfo-icon (Pajhwok): National Security Advisor (NSA) John Bolton has become a staunch internal foe of an emerging peace deal in Afghanistaninfo-icon aimed at ending America’s longest war, officials say.

Sidelined by President Donald Trump, Bolton is facing questions about how long he will remain in the administration.

“As the president’s top aides prepared for a high-stakes meeting on the future of Afghanistan earlier this month, one senior official was not on the original invite list: national security adviser John Bolton,” The Washington Postreported Friday.

“The attendance of the top security aide would normally be critical, but the omission was no mistake,” senior US officials told the Post.

Bolton, who has long advocated an expansive military presence around the worldinfo-icon, has become a staunch internal foe of an emerging peace deal aimed at ending America’s longest war, the officials said.”

Bolton, a leading neoconservative, has sought to continue the war in Afghanistan, which has been being going on for almost 18 years.

 “His opposition to the diplomatic effort in Afghanistan has irritated President Trump, these officials said, and led aides to leave the National Security Council out of sensitive discussions about the agreement,” the newspaper noted. Irritating Trump has raised questions about how long Bolton will last.

“The sidelining of Bolton has raised questions about his influence in an administration that is seeking a troop withdrawal from Afghanistan as well as an ambitious nuclear deal with North Korea and potential engagement with Iranian President Hassan Rouhani.

Bolton, US officials said, stands in opposition to those efforts but he does so increasingly from the periphery,” The Post reported.

“At the zenith of his influence, Bolton enabled the president to act on his most aggressive instincts and outmaneuvered other Cabinet officials with less experience in the interagency process. But his tough management style and bellicose worldview have frayed relations with some colleagues.”

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