Trump claimed on Twitter Friday morning that he’d aborted the mission, purportedly in retaliation for Iran’s downing of an unmanned U.S. spy drone, just 10 minutes before it was due to take place after suddenly learning that 150 people could die in the raid.
“Something’s wrong there,” Smith said of Trump’s version of events.
“I talked to a former top national security official in an earlier Republican administration who says this just doesn’t add up,” he noted.
The president would have been fully briefed by the generals as to, if you hit target A, here are the dangers, or here is the possible collateral damage. So the idea that the president, 10 minutes before the actual go ― and again, The New York Times is reporting that the ships were in place, that the war planes were in the air ― that 10 minutes before you’re learning for the first time that there were going to be 150 casualties, seems pretty unlikely and certainly not the way it’s been done in the past.
Smith said later in the segment that Trump’s explanation “just doesn’t make sense.”
“It doesn’t hold together,” said Wallace. “The timeline for when he learned information and when he decided to act doesn’t make a lot of sense.”
“In a sense, maybe that’s the biggest problem,” he added. “You can argue if you don’t want to strike, don’t strike. If you want to strike, do strike. But don’t send mixed messages that confuse not only your enemies but even your allies and people here in this country, as to what you’re going to do.”
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