A president ill-prepared to discuss the issues, dominated by authoritarian leaders like the Russian president, Vladimir Poutine, and the Turkish president, Recep Tayyip Erdogan, hostile towards his allies of the western countries and who speaks above all about himself: here, according to CNN, the unflattering portrait that emerged from hundreds of highly classified phone calls to foreign heads of state and government.
Former President Trump staff, including former national security advisers HR McMaster, then former White House National Security Advisor (NSC) John Bolton, former Defense Secretary James Mattis, Secretary of State Rex Tillerson and White House chief of staff John Kelly and intelligence officials believed the president was often
According to the network’s sources, who reiterate information already published, Donald Trump very rarely read the information documents prepared by the CIA and the NSC before his calls with the leaders.
His tone, his outbursts of rage against the allies, his servility towards authoritarian leaders, his ignorance of history and his lack of preparation were just as worrying as the content of the exchanges, according to the sources, which describe ramblings. wacky, fact-free and based on the president’s hunches, his guesses, the opinions of Fox News TV hosts and the misinformation gleaned from social media.
abominations so serious for the national security interests of the United States that if members of Congress heard the witnesses to the conversations or read the records, which are archived, that many of his Republican allies could no longer maintain their confidence in the chairman, summed up a source familiar with most of the discussions.
Echoing John Bolton’s book published last week, The Room Where It Happened, A White House Memoir (The room where it happened, memories of the White House), the sources say that Donald Trump often pursued goals more related to his own interest than to what his collaborators considered important for American national security. In his book, Mr. Bolton argued, for example, that his former boss had asked for help from China to be re-elected.
Recently, James Mattis, a former four-star general of the Marines, also made an irrevocable judgment on his former boss in a statement published on the journal’s website. Tea Atlantic.
This new charge, which adds to other equally negative descriptions of the president, comes this time from the journalist Carl Bernstein, who says to have interviewed during four months sources at the White House and in the intelligence community well aware of the content of the conversations and who requested anonymity.
In the 1970s, the journalist, along with his colleague Bob Woodward, exposed the Watergate scandal involving President Richard Nixon.
Authoritarian leaders who have the upper hand
Donald Trump would have been convinced to be able to capitulate before his will almost all foreign leaders by charming them or by putting pressure on them, according to sources, who say they have not seen any improvement over time.
In his dealings with Vladimir Putin, he generally ignored policy expertise and neglected important issues, such as human rights or an arms control agreement, but stubbornly sought admiration and approval .
A high-level government official [a comparé] the Russian president to a great chess master and Trump to a casual checker.
Sources also said that the frequency of calls from the Turkish president, which multiplied requests for favors, and the ease with which he could reach President Trump, bypassing National Security Council protocols, were also a concern.
President Trump’s decision to withdraw US troops from northern Syria, which had even been criticized by some of his most loyal allies, would have been dependent on the skill of the Turkish president, who would have been his most frequent interlocutor, to get what he wanted from him.
Allies – and especially allies – insulted
The dynamics were quite different with Western leaders such as Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau or the leaders of France, the United Kingdom, Australia or Germany, says CNN.
Showing himself hostile, even aggressive, the president then made his grievances the leitmotif of the discussions and tried rather to intimidate his interlocutors.
The attacks were still
more vicious when he spoke with women like the chancellor, Angela Merkel, who did not let her be imposed, or the former British prime minister, Theresa May.
He would have accused the first of being
stupid and under the influence of the Russians, and the second to be
imbecile and without a backbone, for example in its approach to Brexit and immigration.
The common topic in all discussions: Trump
No matter who he spoke with, Carl Bernstein sources say, it was much more about Donald Trump than about the United States.
According to testimony, the latter continued to boast to foreign leaders, including the Crown Prince of Saudi Arabia Mohammed bin Salman and the North Korean dictator Kim Jong-un, of his own wealth, his genius, his
large achievements as president and
idiocy of his predecessors, particularly Barack Obama.
It was as if the United States had disappeared. It was always “only me”.
The president’s daughter and son-in-law, Ivanka Trump and Jared Kushner, have reportedly listened to calls, despite their lack of foreign policy experience.
After a call with President Putin, Donald Trump was more interested in hearing their congratulations than the critics of Fiona Hill, National Security Council expert Rex Tillerson, HR McMaster .
Witness star of the impeachment investigation conducted last fall by Democrats, it was called to order President Trump and Republicans virulently, burning down the theory that Kiev has sought to influence the result of the 2016 presidential election, pointing rather to Moscow.
According to CNN sources, some former Trump officials may be willing to testify about what they know.