WASHINGTON DC, United States (Kurdistan 24) – Amb. John Bolton, former US ambassador to the UN, told Kurdistan 24, “I strongly believe that the [independence] referendum is a good thing” for the Kurds to carry out.
“I think the Kurdish people have been without a voice for far too long,” he explained. “And if their decision is to seek independence for [the Kurdistan Region], I think the United States should recognize it.”
Bolton affirmed, “I think that is something that clearly is warranted.”
Iraq is a failed state and the US needs to start developing a policy based on that reality, in Bolton’s view, rather than cling to the illusion that it will be possible to reestablish that country as a unitary state.
“I don’t think that the old Iraq that we knew is ever coming back,” he said. “And, I think the sooner we understand that the better.”
Bolton noted that the “Kurds have fought with us in the struggle” against the Islamic State (IS).
“They’ve long deserved their own country, and I think the time may be now for it,” he concluded, “if that is the decision that they want to make.”
Bolton sees Iran as a major danger. He characterized it as “a threat to everybody in the region, even those who think they’re Iran’s friends.”
Tehran’s nuclear weapons program makes it a global threat, as well. Bolton explained that he did not think that program had “really been limited” by the deal struck under President Barack Obama, especially, given Iran’s ongoing “cooperation with North Korea,” which has emerged as a major proliferation concern for the Trump administration.
“The Iranian menace,” he warned, “is growing stronger, not weaker.”
Bolton was a senior diplomat during the presidency of George W. Bush, first as Undersecretary of State for Arms Control and International Security and then as America’s UN ambassador.
A life-long Republican, Bolton studied at Yale University, where he received a bachelor’s degree and then obtained his law degree from the Ivy League school.
Editing by Nadia Riva and Karzan Sulaivany