Donald Trump’s intelligence briefings seem to go largely ignored due to his inattentiveness, inability, or unwillingness to receive information, and it’s actually put this country in peril. For example, even though the president received dozens of intel briefings on the coronavirus’s looming threat, he went as far as to blame a January 23 briefing for not adequately warning him of the threat the novel coronavirus posed. And according to reports, Trump doesn’t bother to read the written intelligence reports that he is given, and instead, he uses visuals such as graphs and charts.
Politico reports that Trump “was in the middle of receiving a highly classified briefing on Afghanistan at his New Jersey golf club when he suddenly craved a malted milkshake,” and then things took a bizarre turn.
“Does anyone want a malt?” he asked the senior defense, and intelligence officials gathered around him, the outlet reports, an august group that included the head of the CIA’s Special Activities Center, which is responsible for covert operations and paramilitary operations.
Yeah, so this sounds like a highly classified meeting.
“We have the best malts, you have to try them,” Trump insisted, then he asked a waiter to come into the room where code-word classified intelligence was being discussed.
According to three former officials, the peculiar milkshake episode, which took place just months after Trump took office in 2017, became legendary inside the CIA.
It was seen as an early harbinger of Trump’s disinterest in intelligence, which would later be borne out by the new president’s notorious resistance to reading his classified daily briefing, known as the PDB, and his impatience with the briefers, current and former officials said.
And now the United States is going through several national crises, and we appear to be left without a president at the helm to take command and guide us through this apocalyptic hellscape Americans have found themselves living through.
In contrast, Democratic nominee Joe Biden is already getting intel briefings. From his years of experience in the White House alongside former president Barack Obama, you can bet your bottom dollar that he’s reading them and takes them seriously. On the Russian bounties reports, Biden responded in July to say that “the idea that somehow he didn’t know, or isn’t being briefed, it is a dereliction of duty, if that’s the case.” He went on to add that if Trump “was briefed, and nothing was done about this, that’s a dereliction of duty.”