- President Donald Trump once said "my f—ing generals area a bunch of p—ies" during a meeting, CNN reports, citing journalist Bob Woodward's new book "Rage."
- An aide to former Secretary of Defense Jim Mattis reportedly heard the president make the comment and then documented it in an email to the secretary.
- Accounts from Woodward's forthcoming book follow reports last week that the president disparaged US service members who died in combat, prisoners of war, and wounded veterans.
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President Donald Trump called generals serving under his command a "bunch of p—ies," CNN reported Wednesday, citing journalist Bob Woodward's new book "Rage."
An aide to former Secretary of Defense James Mattis, who resigned over differences of opinion with the president, reportedly heard Trump say "my f—ing generals are a bunch of p—ies" in a meeting, the details of which are unclear. Mattis is said to have asked the aide to document the president's comment in an email.
Trump reportedly criticized the generals because they put a greater value on alliances than some of the presidents priorities, such as trade deals.
Mattis, a firm believer in the value of US alliances, says he resigned as secretary of defense after Trump ordered US troops to pull out of Syria and abandon US partners in the region. According to "Rage," he said: "I was basically directed to do something that I thought went beyond stupid to felony stupid."
In the Woodward book, Mattis is quoted as saying Trump has "no moral compass" and calling the president "dangerous" and "unfit."
After Mattis stepped down as secretary of defense, Trump criticized the retired Marine Corps general's service and at one point said: "I think I would've been a good general, but who knows?"
Trump also expressed frustration with military leaders in conversations with Woodward, CNN reported. The president is said to have criticized military leaders who believe that NATO and other alliances with countries like South Korea as being in the best interest of the US.
"I wouldn't say they were stupid, because I would never say that about our military people," Trump said. "But if they said that, they — whoever said that was stupid." The president has long considered US alliances transactional matters and expressed concern that the US is being taken advantage of by American allies and partners.
The shocking reporting in Woodward's new book follows a report last week from The Atlantic citing multiple sources that said Trump made disparaging remarks about US service members who died in combat, prisoners of war, and wounded veterans.
The Atlantic report, which the president and the White House have strongly denied, said that Trump objected to visiting a memorial cemetery in Paris in 2018 where American war dead are buried because he did not see the point in honoring the fallen.
He reportedly asked: "Why should I go to that cemetery? It's filled with losers." In another instance, he reportedly referred to Marines who died in battle as "suckers."
The explosive report also said that Trump questioned the sacrifice retired Marine Corps Gen. John Kelly's son Robert, who was killed in 2010 in Afghanistan, made during a 2017 Memorial Day visit to Arlington National Cemetery.
"I don't get it. What was in it for them?" Trump reportedly said to a grieving father at his son's grave.
Kelly didn't comment on The Atlantic report, but a friend and four-star general said that the president "can't fathom the idea of doing something for someone other than himself."
The article also provided a number of other examples of Trump allegedly bashing service members and veterans or failing to grasp the significance of military service.
Insider has reached out to the White House about the allegations in Woodward's book but has not yet received comment.
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