John Kelly Clarifies He Didn't Call Donald Trump An 'Idiot'

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"This guy is mentally retarded".

In July 2017, Trump reportedly dismissed the input of high-ranking military commanders, indicating that his thinking about the war effort had been influenced by a previous meeting with veterans from the war, who told him North Atlantic Treaty Organisation forces on the ground there had not been helpful.

Mr Dowd also expressed his concerns directly to Mueller, Woodward writes. "I guess I can bring it right to the president next time".

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

"He just made something up".

Mr Dowd, in a statement Tuesday, said "no so-called "practice session" or "re-enactment" took place and denied saying Mr Trump was likely to end up in an orange jumpsuit.

"Fear: Trump in the White House" says Trump's chief of staff privately called him an "idiot" and presidential aides plucked documents off Trump's desk and thought he was often unaware of foreign policy basics.

The book describes the aftermath of Charlottesville as a turning point for many in the White House.

Kelly has denied the assertions made in the book. In her statement, she went on to list administration accomplishments and predicted a Trump win in 2020.

Others in the West Wing would demur when hit with questions about the war in Afghanistan, which was launched weeks after the September 11 terrorist attacks and is approaching its 17th anniversary.

In a Friday morning tweet, Trump is objecting to The Washington Post writer's narrative of Trump's turbulent 18 months in office. Lindsay Graham of SC, to put in a good word for him as well.

He said in an interview with The Daily Caller, "There was nobody taking anything from me". Woodward also says he sat down with Conway to discuss a Trump interview, according to the phone call transcript.

The president is quoted as likening former chief of staff Reince Priebus to "a little rat", and telling his 80-year-old secretary of commerce, Wilbur Ross, "I don't trust you ..."

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"I know what I read in the newspapers", Trump's interlocutor replied. "I think you've always been fair".

"He couldn't even be a one-person country lawyer down in Alabama", Mr Trump said of Mr Sessions, according to the book.

In the book, Mr Trump blasts Mr Giuliani after he appears on Sunday talk shows to defend the then-candidate in the wake of the infamous "Access Hollywood" tape, in which Mr Trump is heard to make lewd claims about groping women. Trump even complained about the military spending involved in joint exercises and other activities aimed at maintaining a strong presence on the Korean Peninsula. Mattis became frustrated by the president's response, according to Woodward.

Defense Secretary Jim Mattis hung up the phone, according to Woodward, and said: "We're not going to do any of that". "Fear" renews a Woodward tradition of releasing a news-making account of a sitting president in the fall of an election season, with previous works including "The Agenda: Inside the Clinton White House" and "Plan of Attack: The Definitive Account of the Decision to Invade Iraq", about President George W. Bush. He said Trump's gone off the rails (meaning he's crazy), and because of this "We're in Crazytown".

Mr Mattis is quoted explaining to Mr Trump why the U.S. maintains troops on the Korean Peninsula to monitor North Korea's missile activities. "Well, accurate is that nobody's ever done a better job than I'm doing as President".

Woodward cites as his sources hundreds of hours of interviews with mostly unnamed Trump aides and others.

While the journalist does not name his sources, he says he spoke with many people now or formerly working for Trump, discussing not just the president's personality but also major policy debates regarding North Korea and Afghanistan.

"He always knows where I stand, and he and I both know this story is total BS", he said.

The Post reports that a recurring theme of the book is the efforts of Trump aides to control his impulses, hiding papers so Trump can't sign them and talking the president down from what were viewed as bad ideas.

"A third of my job was trying to react to some of the really risky ideas that he had and try to give him reasons to believe that maybe they weren't such good ideas", said Porter, according to CNN. The author and Washington Post journalist has won two Pulitzer Prizes, including one for his coverage of the Watergate scandal that led to President Richard Nixon's resignation.

"Let's f**king kill him!"

The president insisted he "never used those terms on anyone, including Jeff", adding that "being a southerner is a GREAT thing". So we're going to have a very inaccurate book, and that's too bad.

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