Longtime Pentagon official John Bolton sparred with Newsmax’s "The Balance" host Eric Bolling on Friday, calling the attempted overthrow of Venezuelan President Nicolás Maduro "a good example" of a coup d'état.
Pressed by Bolling over his comments to CNN's Jake Tapper earlier this week, Bolton doubled down on his statement that he "has helped plan coups d'état — not here but, you know, other places."
"This is something that some of the snowflakes on the left were kind of shocked at. But when you're looking out for America's best interests, you do what's necessary to protect those interests," Bolton argued.
Bolling then asked Bolton about other coups he has been involved in — but the former Trump administration official refused to answer, citing national security reasons. However, Bolton defended the Iraq War and declared he did not consider it a U.S.-led overthrow.
"I wouldn't consider Iraq a coup d'état, although it had the effect of regime change. I think that was the right thing to do, and I think [former President] George W. Bush pursued the right policy to protect America and its national interest," he proclaimed, sharing similar thoughts about Afghanistan.
Bolton, who had a falling out with his former boss, struck a different tone on last year's Jan. 6 riot at the U.S. Capitol, referring to it as "the failed effort of Donald Trump to keep himself in office."
"It was a stain on the history of our country. It was a big mistake, and I think he's permanently damaged his place in history — even among some of his strongest supporters."
However, Bolton did not provide a direct link between Trump and the attack. The former top-ranking adviser instead deferred to evidence provided by the Jan. 6 select committee.
"It's worse than a crime; it was a mistake," Bolton quoted Charles Maurice de Talleyrand-Périgord in reference to Trump's behavior during the attack.
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