Mattis Denies Report Trump Asked For a Massive Enhancement of Nuclear Arsenal

Trump, long obsessed with nuclear weapons, wants 28000 more
Tillerson 'Moron' Comment Followed Trump's Call for Massive Nuclear Buildup: Report
Author

12 October, 2017

President Donald Trump attacked NBC News after the network reported on Wednesday that Trump called for a tenfold increase in the US's nuclear arsenal during a July 20 meeting at the Pentagon.

During the July meeting that led to Secretary of State Rex Tillerson calling the president a "moron" - another piece of NBC reporting that the White House has ridiculed - Trump was shown a slide presentation that depicted America's nuclear stockpile diminishing during the past five decades.

Trump denied on Wednesday afternoon that he ever suggested the United States increase its nuclear arsenal.

"I want to have absolutely, perfectly maintained - which we are in the process of doing - nuclear force", he said. The president reportedly remarked Wednesday: "It is frankly disgusting the press is able to write whatever it wants to write".

Conway's comments came the same day Trump launched into one of his fiercest rants yet about "fake news".

The Executive Director of the First Amendment Coalition, David Snyder, told Newsweek the comment from Trump was something more akin to a statement "the leader of some authoritarian country would make".

"In suggesting that a broadcast network's license be targeted because of its coverage, Mr. Trump once again evoked the Watergate era when President Richard M. Nixon told advisers to make it hard for The Washington Post to renew the FCC license for a Florida television station it owned", The New York Times said in its report on the tweet.

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Trump lashed out at NBC News over a report indicating that he'd called for a drastic expansion of the USA nuclear arsenal.

He continued, "With all of the Fake News coming out of NBC and the Networks, at what point is it appropriate to challenge their License?" Trump wrote. "Bad for country!" Instead, licenses are issued to local stations.

President Donald Trump's official portrait from Wikimedia Commons. Comcast, which owns NBC, owns several licenses in major markets such as NY and Los Angeles.

"Under deregulatory measures that Republicans successfully pushed over the past generation, challenging a license on the grounds that coverage is unfair or biased would be extremely hard", the newspaper reported.

The pair of tweets came just before the president was scheduled to receive his daily intelligence briefing, according to a calendar the White House send reporters overnight. "And people should look into it".

Since November, Conway has blasted at least three news stories on Twitter as "fake news", including a New York Times article about her tendency to publicly discuss Trump's private thinking.


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