In an excerpt of a new book published in The Washington Post an account of the meeting in the upcoming book A Very Stable Genius: Donald J. Trump’s Testing of America depicts Trump becoming increasingly enraged as his generals tried to teach him the fundamentals of American post-war history.
The meeting took place six months into Trump’s presidency after his generals became concerned about “gaping holes” in Trump’s knowledge of how ANYTHING works.
Trump was brought to the Pentagon’s Situation Room, where military leaders, would give him a crash course on who America’s allies were, why they were worth keeping on side. And what countries were actually located where.
That didn’t work out so well, apparently.
The meeting turned into chaos almost immediately. Secretary of State, Rex Tillerson, then-Secretary of Defense Jim Mattis, and National Economic Council Director Gary Cohn took turns trying to explain their points to Trump, but the Doofus-in-Chief appeared bored out of his mind. Then he got increasingly pissed.
The book says Trump repeatedly interrupted.
His first grievance was reportedly against South Korea, then he complained about Obama’s Iranian nuclear deal, and the length of the war in Afghanistan. Then Trump blew his top.
The president reportedly called Afghanistan a “loser war,” and told the military leaders,
“You’re all losers… You don’t know how to win anymore… I want to win… We don’t win any wars anymore… We spend $7 trillion, everybody else got the oil and we’re not winning anymore.”
The book says that Trump was so angry at this point that he wasn’t breathing properly.
Trump questioned why the U.S. couldn’t get some oil as payment for the troops in the Persian Gulf.
“We spent $7 trillion… they’re ripping us off. Where is the fucking oil?”
The American people are saying we can’t spend a trillion dollars a year on this. We just can’t. It’s going to bankrupt us.”
His rudest comment was yet to come. Trump (who managed to get out of military duty in Vietnam due to a supposed bone-spur problem) told the assembled,
“I wouldn’t go to war with you people… You’re a bunch of dopes and babies.”
The comment left the room speechless. Tillerson was “visibly seething,” and spoke up saying,
“No, that’s just wrong… Mr. President, you’re totally wrong. None of that is true.”
When the meeting ended, Tillerson reportedly stood with a small group of confidants and said,
“He’s a fucking moron.”
Tillerson now views the meeting as “the beginning of the end” of his time in the Trump administration. He was abruptly fired in March 2018 when he was on a diplomatic mission to Africa to try to clean up after Trump’s nasty insults about African countries being “shitholes.”
Mattis resigned in December 2018. Joint Chiefs Chairman Joseph Dunford stayed on until September 2019, retiring at the end of his four-year term.