President Donald Trump wanted to have Syrian President Bashar al-Assad assassinated last year but his defense secretary ignored the request, according to FEAR a new book that depicts top Trump aides sometimes disregarding presidential orders to limit what they saw as dangerous.
“Let’s [expletive] kill him. Let’s go in.” – Donald Trump
One of the sources of considerable consternation for the president’s staff, per Woodward, was what they viewed as his dangerous impulses on foreign policy.
After the US believed the Syrian government had launched another chemical attack in April 2017, Mr Trump told Defence Secretary James Mattis to assassinate President Bashar Assad.
“Let’s kill the [expletive] lot of them,” the president reportedly said.
Mr Mattis acknowledged Mr Trump’s request then, after the conversation, told an aide he wouldn’t do “any of that”.
Woodward says administration officials were also concerned when the president asked for plans for a pre-emptive military strike on North Korea during the height of his feud with Kim Jong-un. The president also dressed down top generals over their handling of the war in Afghanistan, saying that soldiers “on the ground” could do a better job.
“How many more deaths?” he asked. “How many more lost limbs? How much longer are we going to be there?”