March 23 (UPI) -- Geopolitical risk emerged Friday to drive oil prices higher for another day as the U.S. president named a hawkish John Bolton as his national security adviser.
U.S. Gen. H.R. McMaster resigned Thursday as President Donald Trump's national security adviser, a position the White House said will be filled by former U.N. Ambassador John Bolton. Serving as a senior fellow at the conservative American Enterprise Institute, Bolton in a February article in the Wall Street Journal said it was "perfectly legitimate" for the United States to launch a pre-emptive strike on North Korea.
On Iran, he made it clear where he stood in a January piece in the same newspaper.
"The Iran agreement rests on inadequate knowledge and fundamentally flawed premises," he wrote.
The shakeup is the latest in a steady line from the Trump administration. The president fired Rex Tillerson and appointed CIA Director Mike Pompeo to be the next secretary of state. A fierce opponent of the Iranian nuclear deal, risk analysts said that appointment put the U.N.-backed measure "on life support."
With Bolton headed to the White House, the Iranian nuclear agreement appears to be in serious jeopardy. The deal lets Iranian oil flow through the global market and the sidelining of millions of barrels of oil would come at a time when markets are already tight.
Trita Parsi, the president of the National Iranian American Council, said Trump's pick of Bolton was a de facto declaration of war on Iran.
"Bolton is an unhinged advocate for waging World War III," he stated.
The pick comes as Trump signed off on tariffs on China meant to counter what the president said was "economic aggression" from Beijing. The Chinese Ministry of Commerce responded through the official Xinhua News Agency that trade pressure put bilateral trade relations at serious risk.
Reacting last week, the U.S. Chamber of Commerce said it was right to react to unfair trade policies, but said tariffs run the risk of wiping out about a third of the American savings that came through this year's federal tax overhaul.
"As we're starting to see, tariffs could lead to a destructive trade war with serious consequences for U.S. economic growth and job creation," Chamber President and CEO Thomas J. Donohue said.