Trump Conducts Witch Hunt Of WH Staff To Sniff Out Woodward's Sources

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A new book by Watergate journalist Bob Woodward, Fear: Trump in the White House, now claims that Donald Trump's aides say he has turned the White House into "Crazytown" and is a national security risk. In the book, Trump says of the former Alabama senator: "This guy is mentally retarded". They want to destroy him.

Mr Trump wanted to have Assad assassinated a year ago but Defense Secretary James Mattis ignored the request, according to the book "Fear: Trump in the White House".

Within hours of the first reports about the book, the USA leader started attacking it, asserting that quotes and stories in the book "were made up frauds, a con on the public". Likewise other stories and quotes.

THE RESPONSE: Trump, who held one of his first big campaign rallies in Sessions" home state, tweeted: "The already discredited Woodward book, so many lies and phony sources, has me calling Jeff Sessions "mentally retarded" and "a dumb southerner.' I said NEITHER, never used those terms on anyone, including Jeff, and being a southerner is a GREAT thing". "This is another pathetic attempt to smear people close to President Trump and distract from the administration's many successes".

White House press secretary Sarah Sanders called it "nothing more than fabricated stories, many by former disgruntled employees, told to make the President look bad". In a transcript and audio of the call released by the Post, Woodward tells Trump he made repeated efforts to get an interview, while a clearly irritated Trump says he would have participated if he had known.

What are the allegations in the book?

According to a report in The Sun, the book goes on to claim that they swipe papers from his desk to stop him signing risky orders, it adds.

Defence Secretary Jim Mattis is denying he uttered comments critical of President Donald Trump that are contained in a new book by journalist Bob Woodward.

"I'm not going to sit there and let him look like an idiot", he said.

President Trump appears intensely interested in how he is portrayed on cable news. Mattis is quoted as telling an aide, after hanging up the phone, "We're not going to do any of that".

Mr Mattis is also quoted as saying Mr Trump had the understanding of "a fifth- or sixth-grader" - the age of 10 or 11 - in understanding foreign affairs.

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The documents would have allowed the president to withdraw from the North American Free Trade Agreement and a trade deal with South Korea.

On Wednesday Mr Trump called once again for a change to libel laws to make it more hard to publish such accounts.

"Madeleine is the key", Trump said or his executive assistant and gatekeeper. "While I generally enjoy reading fiction, this is a uniquely Washington brand of literature, and his anonymous sources do not lend credibility", Mattis said.

But it's the third book in what's now a "chaos trilogy" that the White House might find the hardest to counter in the public marketplace of ideas.

Certainly, India, like the rest of the world, is watching the latest flame-out by the world's most powerful man with both shock and incredulity.

Former George W. Bush press secretary Ari Fleischer defended Woodward's methodology.

Woodward himself issued a brief statement saying he stands by his reporting.

Aside from Trump rejecting quotes attributed to him, Kelly and Mathis both pushed back with vehement denials of remarks Woodward quoted.

By Wednesday afternoon, White House reporters noted a slight change in the tone of official statements, implicitly accepting some internal strife. She was responding to Woodward's claim that Pentagon chief Mattis engaged in subversive action similar to Cohn's when he ignored Trump's order to kill Assad after a chemical weapons attack.

"I guess I can bring it right to the president next time", Conway said. It is. But it does mean that one should not expect this book to be a revelatory game-changer for this administration just because it resonates in the echo chambers of partisan politics and the media.