President Donald Trump on Monday delivered a speech to the U.S. Central Command (CENTCOM) at MacDill Air Force Base in Tampa, Florida, in which he falsely accused the media of declining to report terror attacks. "It's gotten to a point where it's not even being reported. And in many cases, the very, very dishonest press doesn't want to report it. They have their reasons, and you understand that," Trump said.
Trump's rhetoric at CENTCOM set off alarm bells among both the media and the Pentagon staff. "Super, super dangerous," said The Washington Post's Chris Cillizza. "Makes people believe the media has some sort of nefarious motives." Meanwhile, BuzzFeed's senior national security correspondent Nancy Youssef reported overhearing a Pentagon staffer ask, "What are we supposed to do with that?" after watching the speech.
The Trump administration has faced heat over similar allegations, with Kellyanne Conway recently referring to a "Bowling Green Massacre," which never occurred.