Joe Biden has started receiving classified intelligence briefings, according to NBC News.
H.R. McMaster, President Trump’s former national security adviser, writes in his new book that withdrawing troops from Afghanistan and partnering with the Taliban has made the United States less safe, he tells 60 Minutes.
Said McMaster: “Terrorist organizations who pose a threat to us are stronger now than they were on September 10, 2001.”
The book is out next week.
Said Trump: “I have built a nuclear — a weapons system that nobody’s ever had in this country before. We have stuff that you haven’t even seen or heard about. We have stuff that Putin and Xi have never heard about before. There’s nobody — what we have is incredible.”
“Woodward said other unnamed sources confirmed the program’s existence, though details on it are not included.”
“At least 37 million people have been displaced as a direct result of the wars fought by the United States since Sept. 11, 2001, according to a new report from Brown University’s Costs of War project,” the New York Times reports.
“That figure exceeds those displaced by conflict since 1900, the authors say, with the exception of World War II.”
“I’m not saying the military’s in love with me, the soldiers are. The top people in the Pentagon probably aren’t, because they want to do nothing but fight wars so that all of those wonderful companies that make the bombs and make the planes and make everything else stay happy.”
— President Trump, quoted by CNN.
“President Trump has long been unhappy with Defense Secretary Mark Esper, and White House officials have talked to Veterans Affairs Secretary Robert Wilkie about taking the top Pentagon job should Trump decide to fire Esper,” NBC News reports.
“Two senior administration officials said Trump discussed the position directly with Wilkie at the White House last month. Two other senior administration officials said Wilkie had senior-level discussions with the White House about becoming Trump’s next defense secretary.”
Washington Post: “Long before Trump’s views of the military would emerge as a flash point in his 2020 reelection campaign — before he would shock the political world with the more widely seen 2015 attack on McCain, in which he said the senator was ‘not a war hero’ and declared, ‘I like people who weren’t captured’ — Trump had a long track record of incendiary and disparaging remarks about veterans and military service.”
“Many of his remarks are memorialized in television interviews and the tapes of radio conversations with shock jocks, dating to his years as a private citizen and businessman.”
“John Kelly left the White House barely on speaking terms with President Trump. In the months since, Mr. Kelly, a retired four-star general and former White House chief of staff, has stayed mostly silent as other senior military figures have publicly and harshly criticized the president,” the New York Times reports.
“Much to the consternation of friends and associates who have been pushing him to speak out, Mr. Kelly continued his silence on Friday about a report in The Atlantic that the president had privately referred to American troops killed in combat as ‘losers’ and ‘suckers.'”
“Mr. Kelly refused on-the-record interview requests about his recollection of comments Mr. Trump had reportedly made when Mr. Kelly was with him on a 2018 trip to France.”
Gen. Mark Milley, chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, told Congress the U.S. armed forces will have no role in carrying out the election process or resolving a disputed vote, the AP reports.
The comments from Milley “underscore the extraordinary political environment in America, where the president has declared without evidence that the expected surge in mail-in ballots will make the vote ‘inaccurate and fraudulent,’ and has suggested he might not accept the election results if he loses.”
Miles Taylor, former chief of staff to Homeland Security Secretary Kirstjen Nielsen, writes in the Washington Post that President Trump “dangerous” for America.
Writes Taylor: “I can attest that the country is less secure as a direct result of the president’s actions.”
“President Trump has privately said that he intends to replace Secretary of Defense Mark Esper after the November election,” Bloomberg reports.
Meanwhile, Esper has told people close to him “that he intends to leave regardless of the election’s outcome, meaning he could exit the administration about two months before Trump does, if the president loses.”
New York Times: “The depth of Trump’s animosity has been known since before his inauguration. What has not been known is the full extent of how this suspicion has reshaped the intelligence community and the personal and professional calculations of its members, forcing officials to walk a fine line between serving the president and maintaining the integrity of their work. The brunt of Trump’s discontent has been borne by those who work in the Office of the Director of National Intelligence.”
“This ‘wearing down’ has extended well beyond the dismissal of a few top intelligence officials whom the president perceived to be disloyal. It has also meant that those who remain in the community are acutely mindful of the risks of challenging Trump’s ‘alternative facts’ … with consequences that are substantive, if often hidden from view.”
“A controversial Trump administration pick for a top Pentagon post, retired Army Brig. Gen. Anthony Tata, has been placed into a senior role days after his nomination hearing was canceled amid bipartisan opposition to his nomination,” CNN reports.
A Pentagon spokesperson said that Tata has formally withdrawn his nomination and “has been designated as the official Performing the Duties of the Deputy Undersecretary of Defense for Policy reporting to the Acting Undersecretary of Defense for Policy Dr. James Anderson.”
The nomination of retired Army general Anthony Tata for a senior civilian position in the Trump administration was cast into doubt Thursday morning when his confirmation hearing was canceled just before it was scheduled to begin amid signs that he did not have enough Republican votes, the Washington Post reports.
“In the fall of 2018, when former CIA director John Brennan decided to write his memoir, he asked the agency for his official records, including his notes and any documents that he had reviewed and signed that were classified. The CIA, where Brennan had worked for nearly 30 years, said no,” the Washington Post reports.
“It was a break with decades of tradition. The CIA routinely lets former directors review classified files when writing books about their careers. Their manuscripts are scrutinized to ensure they don’t expose any national secrets.”
- Amazon Kindle Edition
- Brennan, John O. (Author)
- English (Publication Language)
- 464 Pages - 10/06/2020 (Publication Date) - Celadon Books (Publisher)
“We don’t talk about what we discuss, but we had plenty of discussion, and I think it was very productive.”
— President Trump, quoted by ABC News, on whether he talked to Russian President Vladimir Putin about reports of bounties on U.S. soldiers in Afghanistan.
“President Trump shared tweets Monday from Republican senators touting the benefits of a $740 billion defense authorization bill — legislation he has threatened to veto if it retains a provision instructing the Pentagon to rename military installations honoring Confederate generals,” the Washington Post reports.
“His Twitter activity was the latest twist in Trump’s efforts to simultaneously claim credit for legislation authorizing pay increases for troops and other investments in the military while waging a battle over what he has characterized as an effort to erase U.S. history.”