Top 10 List For New National Security Advisor

Now that President Trump has named former hostage negotiator (sounds apropos)  Robert O’Brien as his fourth national security advisor, I would like to offer him my Top 10 list of unsolicited advice for this critically important job.

  1. Don’t unpack, don’t sign any long-term leases and
  2. Never miss an opportunity to tell the boss what a brilliant foreign policy thinker and global leader he is. Try to sound sincere and don’t smirk or giggle when saying that.
  3. Remember, John Bolton got the boot because he forgot rule number one in this White House: the boss is always right. And he knows more about everything than you and everyone else.  He is, in his own words, a “stable genius.”
  4. And this is the most important part: But be careful not to tell him anything you don’t want to read in his next tweet or have him tell his Russian pals. The Israelis learned the hard way. He likes to boast about the secrets he knows, even if he doesn’t know what they mean.
  5. Before taking the job new hires are expected to take a loyalty oath (ask Jim Comey about failure to do that) to the President, not the job or the country but personally to Donald J. Trump. Loyalty is a one-way street in Trumpworld. Here’s a critical part of your oath to always bear in mind: “You lie and I’ll swear to it.”
  6. Take copious notes. And hide them in a safe place.  You will need them when history comes calling.
  7. Here’s how the president sees your new position: “It’s a great job. It’s a lot of fun to work with Donald Trump. It’s easy because I make all the decisions.”
  8. Just as you know the two-word key to a successful marriage is “yes, dear,” so it is with your new job to learn to say, “yes, boss.”
  9. Don’t make the mistake of your predecessor, who had the audacity to object to the boss inviting the Afghan Taliban terrorist leaders to Camp David on the eve of the anniversary of the 9/11 attacks. Speaking truth to this president can be dangerous, as when Bolton reminded him that it was the Afghan Taliban who gave sanctuary to Al Qaeda and were Osama bin Laden’s hosts and protectors as he planned the infamous attacks 18 years ago.
  10. For more about outsourcing of foreign policy decision making in the White House and the role of Saudi Crown Prince Mohammad bin Sultan, see my Washington Watch column.
About the Author
Douglas M. Bloomfield is a syndicated columnist, Washington lobbyist and consultant. He spent nine years as the legislative director and chief lobbyist for AIPAC.