WASHINGTON • The United States has sued former national security adviser John Bolton, seeking to block him from publishing a book about his time in the White House that it said contained classified information and would compromise national security.
The civil lawsuit on Tuesday came one day after US President Donald Trump said Mr Bolton would be breaking the law if the book were published.
The White House National Security Council (NSC) “has determined that the manuscript in its present form contains certain passages – some up to several paragraphs in length – that contain classified national security information”, the lawsuit said.
Publication of the book “would cause irreparable harm, because the disclosure of instances of classified information in the manuscript reasonably could be expected to cause serious damage, or exceptionally grave damage, to the national security of the United States”, according to the lawsuit.
Mr Trump fired Mr Bolton in September after about 17 months as national security adviser. The President said on Monday Mr Bolton knows he has classified information in his book, and that he had not completed a clearing process required for any book written by former government officials with access to sensitive information.
The Room Where It Happened: A White House Memoir is set to be published on June 23.
Publisher Simon & Schuster said the lawsuit is an attempt by the Trump administration to stop “publication of a book it deems unflattering to the President”. It said Mr Bolton has fully cooperated with the NSC pre-publication review.
Separately, Mr Trump’s niece is set to publish a memoir next month that “shines a bright light on the dark history” of the US President’s family, her publisher says.
Ms Mary Trump will release Too Much And Never Enough: How My Family Created the World’s Most Dangerous Man, on July 28, according to Simon & Schuster.
It marks the first time that a Trump family member will publish unflattering stories about the former real estate tycoon and reality TV star.
Ms Trump, 55, is the daughter of Fred Trump Jr, the President’s older brother, who died in 1981 at age 42 due to complications from alcoholism.
The 240-page book will detail events she witnessed as a child while spending time at her grandparents’ house in New York’s Queens borough, where her uncle and his four siblings grew up.
In the book, she explains “how specific events and general family patterns created the damaged man who currently occupies the Oval Office”, the publisher said.
REUTERS, AGENCE FRANCE-PRESSE