Tuesday on MSNBC’s “Andrea Mitchell Reports,” former CIA Director and MSNBC analyst John Brennan said President Donald Trump “continues to grandstand” and “say things publicly that are far from the truth” on foreign policy.
Brennan said, “It shouldn’t surprise anybody what we may be seeing in North Korea right now. The agreement, the so-called agreement that was forged in Singapore between Mr. Trump and Kim Jong-Un basically said nothing more than they’ll work toward denuclearization, with great uncertainty about what they mean by denuclearization. There are reports they continue to work on fissile materials and intercontinental ballistic missile capability. These are ICBMs that can reach the homeland. Kim Jong-Un is taking advantage of this time to continue to develop his capabilities both in terms of his nuclear program and the ballistic missile capabilities to deliver those nuclear warheads. I think this is something to be greatly concerned about. I know Mike Pompeo is trying to negotiate some type of arrangement. Again, it’s not surprising at all, given the continued assessment, I believe, of the intelligence community that Kim Jong-Un has no intention to give up his nuclear weapons.”
He continued, “Clearly Mr. Trump continues to grandstand and to say things publicly that are far from the truth. I’m reminded of Hamlet’s soliloquy in terms of sound and fury, signifying nothing. A lot of times we hear Mr. Trump spout out on these issues, including meetings with Mr. Putin and Kim Jong-Un and others, and there’s not much there there. These are serious issues that affect U.S. national security. I’m hoping all of his advisers and the intelligence community are taking the issue seriously, as I’m confident they are. Mr. Trump has to do the same thing. He has to understand. It’s not just a question of how to express what he believes or what he wants people to believe is happening. He really needs to make progress on these very thorny national security issues. ”
On being willing to meet with Iran, Brennan said, “Well, I think it reflects two things. One is that he makes up foreign policy on the fly. So whatever comes into his mind, he decides to say it. Secondly, I think he has a greatly, greatly inflated view of his ability to move the needle on these key national security issues, whether Russia, North Korea, or Iran. When he says I’m willing to meet with anyone, any time, I believe that he means it. But I don’t think he understands just how complex these issues are, and also he probably realizes that the Iranians are not going to take him at his word because his word has been proved to be worthless. He is not somebody who is able to be pinned down on some of these issues.”
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