Anonymous: Is a new Trump book credible?
A senior Trump administration official has written an anonymous tell-all book that paints “a chilling portrait of the president as cruel, inept, and a danger to the nation,” said Philip Rucker in The Washington Post. In A Warning, the author says senior officials were so panicked by Trump’s incompetence and disdain for morality and the law that they considered resigning en masse “to sound a public alarm.” Trump, the author says, asked aides at one meeting, “Can we just get rid of the judges?” At another, he adopted a Hispanic accent to mock female migrants without husbands, calling them “useless.” He “has trouble synthesizing information” and creates constant chaos, “like a 12-year-old in an air traffic control tower” randomly pushing buttons. The author—who also wrote an anonymous op-ed in The New York Times last year—claims anonymity will keep the discussion centered upon the allegations and not him. But because this public servant is “too cowardly to stand up publicly for the principles” he claims to hold, said John Warner in the Chicago Tribune, he only ensures that his revelations will have no real impact.
If Anonymous is a coward, then “he has plenty of company,” said Jack Shafer in Politico.com. Unnamed sources routinely dish to reporters—sometimes, to help the president. And we have good reason to believe in the author’s credibility, since his claims in the original Times op-ed have been verified over time. He boasted of an organized “resistance” among senior administration officials to frustrate parts of Trump’s agenda and his “worst inclinations.” Just this week, Trump’s former ambassador to the United Nations, Nikki Haley, claimed in a memoir that former Secretary of State Rex Tillerson and former White House Chief of Staff John Kelly tried to recruit her to disobey and undermine Trump to “save the country.”
Why is the national media taking this book seriously? asked Becket Adams in WashingtonExaminer.com. Maybe the person making these allegations is just “a low-level schlub with delusions of grandeur.” Compare this anonymous author’s behavior with that of acting Ukrainian Ambassador Bill Taylor and Lt. Col. Alexander Vindman, said Gary Edson in TheAtlantic.com. These courageous men have staked their careers on testifying publicly in the House impeachment hearings about this rogue president’s behavior. Anonymous and other officials should take a cue and “simply step forward.”