President Trump Names Robert O'Brien As His New National Security Advisor


This morning, President Trump announced that he will name Robert C. O’Brien as his new National Security Advisor. This position does not require confirmation by the senate. He wrote:


I am pleased to announce that I will name Robert C. O’Brien, currently serving as the very successful Special Presidential Envoy for Hostage Affairs at the State Department, as our new National Security Advisor. I have worked long & hard with Robert. He will do a great job!


According to the Washington Post:

Administration officials had viewed him as a safe choice given his strong rapport with colleagues at the State Department and the Pentagon. His “affable demeanor” contrasts with Bolton, who was known as a ruthless bureaucratic infighter, an administration official said last week, requesting anonymity to speak more candidly.

He earned his Bachelor of Arts degree from the University of California, Los Angeles and his Juris Doctor degree from the University of California, Berkeley, Boalt Hall School of Law. “He was a Rotary Scholar at the University of the Free State in South Africa and he speaks fluent Afrikaans.”

O’Brien is a co-founder of Larson O’Brien LLP.


He has served in the administrations of Presidents George W. Bush and Donald Trump. In November, he was confirmed by the senate as the “US Alternate Representative to the 60th session of the United Nations General Assembly, which met in New York 2005-2006. He addressed the General Assembly on the question of Palestine and represented the United States in the General Assembly’s Sixth Committee, which considered the Comprehensive Convention on International Terrorism.” Wikipedia reports:

O’Brien served as Co-Chairman of the United States Department of State’s Public-Private Partnership for Justice Reform in Afghanistan, launched in December 2007 by Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice. O’Brien continues to serve on the Public Private Partnership Executive Committee. On July 31, 2008, President George W. Bush announced his intention to appoint O’Brien to serve in his administration as a member of the Cultural Property Advisory Committee and represent the interests of the general public, for the remainder of a three-year term which expired on April 25, 2011.

In May 2018, Trump appointed O’Brien as Special Presidential Envoy for Hostage Affairs. In May 2019, “he was given the rank of ambassador one year later.”

O’Brien recently appeared in the news for his role in the A$AP Rocky case in Sweden. The rapper was found guilty of assault but did not face prison time for it.


The first order of business for Mr. O’Brien will be to help President Trump sort out the perilous situation in the middle east in the aftermath of Iran’s alleged attack on a Saudi Arabian oil facility.

CBS News reports:

As national security adviser, O’Brien will be responsible for consolidating sensitive information for the president and presenting him with options. Mr. Trump openly said he had serious disagreements with Bolton, and that’s why he was pushed out of the position last week.

Immediately, O’Brien will be tackling any U.S. response to the Saudi oil strikes. Secretary of State Mike Pompeo is scheduled to be in Saudi Arabia the next couple days to assess the situation. O’Brien will also be in the position to give Mr. Trump guidance on what to do in Afghanistan, which was a major point of contention between Mr. Trump and Bolton.


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