A high-ranking official from former President George W. Bush’s State Department shared a dire assessment of the current geopolitical state of affairs, calling it “the most perilous moment in modern American history.”
President Donald Trump “is now set for war on 3 fronts: political vs Bob Mueller, economic vs China/others on trade, and actual vs. Iran and/or North Korea,” Richard Haass tweeted Friday. “This is the most perilous moment in modern American history – and it has been largely brought about by ourselves, not by events.”
Haass, a pillar of the US foreign policy establishment and longtime president of the Council on Foreign Relations, a premiere foreign policy think tank, previously accused the Trump administration of abdicating US global leadership.
Haass’ appraisal on Friday comes after a day of major developments out of the Trump White House.
On Thursday morning, Trump’s lead lawyer, John Dowd, resigned from the President’s personal legal team handling the response to the Russia investigation. Dowd’s resignation came amid growing disagreements with Trump over the response to special counsel Robert Mueller’s probe.
That afternoon, Trump directed the US trade representative to level tariffs on about $50 billion worth of Chinese imports following a seven-month investigation into alleged Chinese intellectual property theft. In addition to the tariffs, the US also plans to impose new investment restrictions and take action against China at the World Trade Organization, and the Treasury Department will also propose additional measures.
Later in the day, Trump announced he was replacing national security adviser H.R. McMaster with John Bolton. Bolton, a former US ambassador to the United Nations and Fox News analyst, is seen as a controversial pick. He has advocated war with Iran and a preemptive strike on North Korea, and remains an unapologetic supporter of the Iraq War despite the flawed intelligence used to justify the US invasion.
CNN’s Jeremy Diamond, Gloria Borger, Pamela Brown, Zachary Cohen, Nicole Gaouette, Kaitlan Collins and David Wright contributed to this report.