Trump denies pushing for tenfold increase in nuclear weapons

Frederick Owens
October 12, 2017

Trump has previously challenged NBC's reporting on the meeting, including a revelation that Secretary of State Rex Tillerson referred to the president as a "moron" after the meeting and considered resigning from the Cabinet.

"Recent reports that the president called for an increase in the USA nuclear arsenal are absolutely false", Pentagon chief Jim Mattis said in a statement.

U.S. Defense Secretary Jim Mattis on Wednesday slammed what he said were "absolutely false" media reports asserting that President Donald Trump had called for an increase in the U.S. nuclear arsenal.

After the meeting, NBC News reported, Tillerson was heard calling the president a "moron", a remark that the president has called "totally phony". "That was just fake news by NBC, which gives a lot of fake news lately", Trump said when asked about the article during a press conference. "Not #1", the president tweeted. We won't need an increase but I want modernisation and I want total rehabilitation.

Trump called the report "pure fiction" on Twitter. Further, they said Trump not only asked about more nuclear weapons, but also about increasing USA troops and military equipment.

Stelter added that the NBC News story about Trump's nuclear comments had multiple sources, and that making up sources rarely happens in journalism.

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Trump's morning tweets came after NBC News reported that Trump purportedly told senior national security advisers during a meeting last summer that he favored what amounted to almost a tenfold increase in nuclear weapons. He said he simply wants the arsenal to be in "tip-top shape" and "perfect shape".

The Trump administration has threatened to prosecute leakers.

According to NBC, senior military commanders told the president that the sort of expansion he reportedly asked for would not only be prohibitively expensive but could also break with decades of US nuclear policy and potentially violate nuclear disarmament treaties.

As president and candidate, Trump has often mused aloud about America's nuclear weapons power, saying there is no point in having them if you do not use them. "There hasn't been a military mission that's required a nuclear weapon in 71 years". I want it in ideal shape.

"I am very uncomfortable with the president of the United States being able to dictate the behavior of anybody", Limbaugh said.

Other reports by Free-Prsite

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