Saturday, 22 September, 2018

Explosive quotes from Bob Woodward's book about Trump

President Trump walks from the Oval Office to board the Marine One helicopter last week President Trump walks from the Oval Office to board the Marine One helicopter last week
Leonard Rios | 07 September, 2018, 17:31

Defence Secretary Jim Mattis is denying he uttered comments critical of President Donald Trump that are contained in a new book by journalist Bob Woodward.

At one point during the call, Trump put Conway on the phone, who admits that she "put in" Woodward's request but it was rejected.

In his interview with The Daily Caller, Trump denied that aides have removed documents from his view, saying "it's just made up" and that "there was nobody taking anything from me". And he stressed that he didn't speak to Woodward. "Let's go in. Let's kill the f***ing lot of them", Mr Trump told the Pentagon chief. "Maybe I wasn't given messages that he called". I would've spoken to you.

The Postpublished what it said was a conversation Woodward had with Trump after the book was finished.

Woodward's latest book, Fear, is focused on the Trump White House and is set to be officially released on September 11. Trump is quoted as describing Reince Priebus, Kelly's predecessor, as "a little rat". Dowd, who stepped down in January, resigned after the mock interview, the book said.

Gen. Mattis told the president that he'd get right on it.

In a statement emailed to USA TODAY, Dowd said he has not read the book and does not plan to address "every inaccurate statement" attributed to him, but he denied he replayed the mock interview before Mueller, that he questioned the president's truthfulness and that he made the remark attributed to him about the orange jumpsuit.

Secretary of Defense Jim Mattis is quoted explaining to Trump why the US maintains troops on Korean Peninsula to monitor North Korea's missile activities.

Mattis told associates after a separate incident that Trump acted like "a fifth- or sixth-grader", according to the book.

Again and again, Woodward recounts at length how Trump's national security team was shaken by his lack of curiosity and knowledge about world affairs and his contempt for the mainstream perspectives of military and intelligence leaders.

Cohn, who tried to rein in Trump's protectionist impulses, also planned to remove a similar memo that would have withdrawn the United States from the North American Free Trade Agreement with Mexico and Canada, Woodward wrote. National security advisers instead developed options for the airstrike that Trump ordered.

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Mr Gary Cohn, who was the chief White House economic adviser, went so far past year as to steal an order from Mr Trump's desk that, if the President had signed, would have cancelled the US-South Korea trade agreement.

Mr Trump also denied the book's claim that he had called Attorney General Jeff Sessions "mentally retarded" and "a dumb southerner".

"This thing's a. hoax", Trump finally said, before deciding he didn't want to testify after all. "He couldn't even be a one-person country lawyer down in Alabama".

And in April 2017, after Syria's Bashar al-Assad attacked civilians with chemical weapons, Mr Woodward reports, Trump demanded Mr Mattis assassinate Mr Assad.

Mueller has asked the White House for access to Trump, and administration officials have negotiated for months over how that might happen. Wolff's book attracted attention with its lively anecdotes but suffered from numerous factual inaccuracies.

It describes how Trump's closest aides have taken extraordinary measures in the White House to try to stop what they saw as his most risky impulses, going so far as to swipe and hide papers from his desk so he wouldn't sign them. Woodward sought through multiple White House officials and others close to Trump to secure an interview with him, to no avail.

Since the Watergate expose appeared in The Washington Post in the early 1970s, Woodward has published powerful, insightful and often embarrassing books on eight USA leaders, including George W. Bush and Barack Obama, based on extensive access to many White House insiders. For this book, Woodward spoke to top aides and other insiders with the understanding that he would not reveal how he got his information, the Post reported.

Former George W. Bush press secretary Ari Fleischer defended Woodward's methodology.

The publication of Mr Woodward's book, due for publication next Tuesday, has been anticipated for weeks. "There were quotes in it I didn't like".

The reporter, who said the book was based on hundreds of hours of interviews, had a brief retort: "It's going to be accurate, I promise".

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