‘I did not get the sense he was joking at all,’ insider tells Rolling Stone magazine
The one-term president demanded to know if such a weapon would constitute an act of war and whether his military could retaliate against the nuclear power, three unnamed former officials told Rolling Stone magazine.
“It was almost too stupid for words,” one source told the magazine, which said that the person was “intimately familiar” with Mr Trump’s questioning.
“I did not get the sense he was joking at all,” the source added.
Mr Trump seemingly had a deep personal interest in hurricanes while the occupant of the Oval Office and has suggested that the military should bomb hurricanes before they make landfall.
According to Axios, in 201 the then-president asked national security and homeland security officials about the threat posed to the US mainland by the storms.
“I got it. I got it. Why don’t we nuke them?” he reportedly said,
“They start forming off the coast of Africa, as they’re moving across the Atlantic, we drop a bomb inside the eye of the hurricane and it disrupts it. Why can’t we do that?”
Mr Trump, who has denied the claim, was reportedly told by one unnamed official: “We’ll look into this.”
Shortly after Mr Trump became president, National Geographic published an article stating that the idea of hitting hurricanes with a nuclear bomb had been raised over the years.
The article said that it was a “really bad idea” with “a surprising history.”
Mr Trump also discussed Hurricane Dorian in the Oval Office, and appeared alongside a National Hurricane Center map that seemed to have been altered with a black pen.
The alteration showed the hurricane’s path hitting Alabama, in an apparent effort to stand up a false claim that Mr Trump had made earlier.