An interesting story about President Trump just ran concerning a casual dinner he had with the leaders of four Latin American countries while attending the annual United Nations General Assembly.
Topics to be discussed over the dinner, included his “big, beautiful wall,” and his threat of blowing up the North American Free Trade Agreement.
Trump also mentioned out of nowhere, the possibility of going to war against Venezuela – that last item on Trump’s agenda is what got the most attention from all four of the leaders. After the meeting, the leaders revealed through their spokesmen that they thought Trump was more insane than they thought him to be on Twitter.
Here is how the story played out, according to Politico:
“To Trump’s left was his secretary of state, Rex Tillerson. “Rex tells me you don’t want me to use the military option in Venezuela,” the president told the gathered Latin American leaders, according to an account offered by an attendee soon after the dinner. “Is that right? Are you sure?” Everyone said they were sure. But they were rattled. War with Venezuela, as absurd as that seemed, was clearly still on Trump’s mind.
By the time the dinner was over, the leaders were in shock, and not just over the idle talk of armed conflict. No matter how prepared they were, eight months into an American presidency like no other, this was somehow not what they expected. A former senior U.S. official with whom I spoke was briefed by ministers from three of the four countries that attended the dinner. “Without fail, they just had wide eyes about the entire engagement,” the former official told me.
Even if few took his martial bluster about Venezuela seriously, Trump struck them as uninformed about their issues and dangerously unpredictable, asking them to expend political capital on behalf of a U.S. that no longer seemed a reliable partner. “The word they all used was: ‘This guy is insane.’”
President Trump increasingly likes to discount reports like these are “fake news,” as if they are somehow false media reporting imagined by reporters to discredit him. The ironic thing is, Trump said he wanted to go after Venezuela for its assault on democracy, but in the states, Trump has repeatedly attacked reporters in his own country for speaking out against him, a common practice in Venezuela.