Trump denies pushing for tenfold increase in nuclear weapons

Trump denies pushing for tenfold increase in nuclear weapons

Trump denies pushing for tenfold increase in nuclear weapons

NBC early Wednesday reported Trump queried USA military officials over the possibility of increasing the nation's nuclear weapons stockpile by tenfold during a summer meeting.

The NBC report stated that some of Trump's key advisers were also in the room during the Pentagon meeting, including the Joint Chiefs of Staff and Secretary of State Rex Tillerson.

President Trump continued his assault on the "fake news media" on Wednesday - suggesting it is time to challenge the networks' broadcast licenses.

After the meeting, NBC News reported, Tillerson was heard calling the president a "moron", a remark that the president has called "totally phony". Trump also tweeted: "With all of the Fake News coming out of NBC and the Networks, at what point is it appropriate to challenge their License?"

A White House officials told NBC the nuclear arsenal was not the meeting's primary topic, and Pentagon spokesperson Dana White commented that Defense Secretary James Mattis "has many closed sessions with the president and his cabinet members". "I never discussed increasing it".

NBC News reported that Trump told his top generals that the USA military's nuclear arsenal should be beefed up by a factor of ten, an observation that shocked senior military officers. "The press should speak more honestly", Trump said during an Oval Office meeting with Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau. He said he simply wants the arsenal to be in "tip-top shape" and "perfect shape".

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The Executive Director of the First Amendment Coalition, David Snyder, told Newsweek the comment from Trump was something more akin to a statement "the leader of some authoritarian country would make".

He called the report "pure fiction" that was "made up to demean".

"If I walked down this hallway and asked, I don't think I'd find one media person who voted for Trump, and he got 45% of the national vote", Rep. Dave Brat, a conservative Virginia Republican, told TIME in the Capitol Building on Wednesday.

By saying he wants to modernise the nuclear force, Trump is referring to moving ahead with a plan he inherited from the Obama administration to develop, build and field new submarines armed with nuclear missiles; new nuclear-capable bomber aircraft and a new fleet of land-based intercontinental ballistic missiles.

Trump returned to the topic later in the press conference. "There hasn't been a military mission that's required a nuclear weapon in 71 years".

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

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