Former President TrumpDonald TrumpTrump takes shot at new GOP candidate in Ohio over Cleveland nickname GOP political operatives indicted over illegal campaign contribution from Russian national in 2016 On The Money — Dems dare GOP to vote for shutdown, default MORE said Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff Gen. Mark MilleyMark MilleyOvernight Defense & National Security — Presented by AM General — Rocky US alliances as Biden heads to UN assembly Thompson says he hopes Jan 6. committee can complete work by 'early spring' Aides try to keep Biden away from unscripted events or long interviews, book claims MORE should be court-martialed if it's true that, as reported, Milley thought Trump would orchestrate a coup.
Trump has been defending himself from an excerpt in the book "I Alone Can Fix It," by Washington Post reporters Carol Leonnig and Philip Rucker, that says Milley believed Trump would try to stay in power through a coup in the last days of his presidency.
“The writings within these third-rate books are Fake News, and 'General' Milley (who [former Defense Secretary James] Mattis wanted to send to Europe in order to get rid of him), if he said what was reported, perhaps should be impeached, or court-martialed and tried,” Trump said in a statement on Friday.
“So, there was no talk of a coup, there was no coup, it all never happened, and it’s just a waste of words by fake writers and a General who didn’t have a clue,” Trump added.
In the book’s excerpt, Milley was reportedly so concerned about the possibility of a Trump coup he even discussed it with his deputies.
"They may try, but they're not going to f---ing succeed," Milley reportedly told his deputies. "You can't do this without the military. You can't do this without the CIA and the FBI. We're the guys with the guns."
In a statement on Thursday refuting the book, Trump said “if I was going to do a coup, one of the last people I would want to do it with is General Mark Milley."
He attacked Milley again on Friday, saying he had “lost total confidence” in him during his presidency.
“Never once did I have a discussion with him about bringing in the Military, or a 'coup,' which makes sense, because I lost total confidence in him and the way he handled himself on our little walk to the church,” Trump said, apparently referring to Trump's 2020 photo op in Lafayette Square, which Mattis criticized.