Matt Lauer to John Brennan: Will Military Leaders ‘Lock’ Trump ‘in A Room’ to Stop Nuclear War?
As talks of military confrontation between the US and North Korea continue to escalate, Today Show host Matt Lauer raised an incredible question: What if White House officials really did have to physically stop President Donald Trump from starting a nuclear war?
As ridiculous as the idea may seem, there have been reports circulating in which WH aides suggest that Chief of Staff John Kelly and Secretary of Defense James Mattis may have formulated a plot to physically apprehend Trump before he reaches the nuclear football.
These reports inspired Lauer to ask Brennan the following:
“I feel weird asking you this, but you’ve read the same stories I’ve read. You know the key players around the president in Mattis, Mcmaster and John Kelly. Stories are going around out there that if the president inches closer to some kind of a nuclear confrontation with North Korea, that those guys are going to do something. They’re going to lock him in a room. They’re going to tackle him. You’re smiling. But these are the stories that are out there. And they will prevent him from carrying out any action that would cause that. Is that all nonsense?”
Despite the preposterous, slapstick image that Lauer’s question conjures up — Kelly or Mattis leaping like an NFL safety at Trump while he’s mid-nuclear launch — the always professional Brennan calmly clarified that the president alone has “unilateral authority” on military action. The former CIA director said Mattis’ options for protest include trying to talk the president out of it or tendering his resignation — the possibility of tackling Trump was not a listed option, though.
When asked whether or not he would follow unethical orders from his authorities, Brennan said that in certain cases — such as a command to bring back waterboarding — he would choose getting fired over following directives.
As for the Mattis, Kelly, and H.R. McMaster, Brennan commended all of them, saying, “They’re patriots… They understand the gravity of this situation, and I don’t think Trump does.”
Watch above via NBC.
[featured image via screengrab]
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