The White House is preparing for the shakeup after Trump complains privately of Coats



Despite the air evacuation, Trump told reporters Wednesday: "I did not even think about it." But the president also denied information that it was changed, but confirmed it later.

This is not the first time the Speaker of Parliament expresses his frustration with Coats, but the attendees were struck by the fact that Trump was still broadcasting about the testimony that took place three weeks ago. When the clashes between Trump and Coats were revealed to the general public, Trump quickly insinuated the discord and moved on to something else.

But Trump's frustrations with Coats have once again surfaced, as he turns his attention to his summit with Kim Jong Un, a North Korean, next week. A senior administration official said Trump was worried that Coats' testimony on North Korea would be used against him next week to undermine the outcome of his second summit with Kim.

Officials pointed out that discussions on alternates likely to replace Coats were in their infancy and that Trump might finally decide not to fire the top intelligence official. Trump is known for bragging about senior officials and threatening to fire them without taking any action. If Trump decided to replace Coats, the officials said it would probably be a matter of months, not weeks.

Trump and Coats have never developed particularly close relations, and the President has repeatedly expressed his frustrations about Coats, saying that he believes Coats was in line with other officials who have sought to control him, like former Defense Secretary Jim Mattis and former White House chief John Kelly staff. But the West Wing has more and more the feeling that Trump's relationship with Coats could be irretrievably irretrievable.

Chris Ruddy, a friend of Trump and a member of his Mar-a-Lago club, reiterated speculation about Coats' future when he told CNN's Christiane Amanpour on Monday that there was had "a general disappointment of the president with the director Coats". . "

"There is a feeling that maybe there needs to be a change of leadership in this position," said Ruddy, who spoke to Trump over the weekend, but that his information is not based on a conversation with Trump.

In addition, a source who spoke to Trump over the weekend said that he expressed his frustration with Coats and that he could soon replace him.

The trigger for Trump 's renewed frustrations with Coats was his recent preparations for Kim' s summit, said a senior administration official.

Trump caution helps as he looks to Kim's top for a boost
Trump is eager to show that his delicate diplomacy with North Korea has progressed and his great assertions of progress have been undermined by his inability to take concrete and verifiable steps towards denuclearization.

Administration officials and sources close to the White House had moderated expectations for Trump's latest summit. The president himself said that he was "in no hurry" to reach his ultimate goal, but Coats' public assessment about North Korea was stung.

While he noted that North Korea had stopped testing nuclear weapons and ballistic missiles for more than a year, Mr. Coats made it clear in an opening statement at a hearing in the Senate that the US intelligence community did not believe that North Korea was planning to abandon its nuclear weapons. .

"We currently believe that North Korea will seek to maintain its WMD capabilities," said Coats. "It is unlikely that he will completely give up his nuclear weapons and production capabilities because his leadership ultimately considers nuclear weapons as essential to the survival of the regime." Our assessment is supported by our observations of a number of factors. activity incompatible with complete denuclearization ".

Coats was in tune with the assessments of the US intelligence community – which Trump himself saw – but denounced in the days following Coats' media coverage and comments from his intelligence colleagues, which contradicted Trump's public affirmations. And Trump now fears that these comments are overshadowing his efforts to sell his second summit with Kim next week as a success.

In addition to all this, this is not the first time that Trump feels publicly undermined by Coats.

After Trump stepped out of his one-on-one meeting with Russian President Vladimir Putin in Helsinki last summer, Mr Coats said he would have advised against the private meeting but that he had not been consulted. And he also made it clear that he still did not have a complete picture of the conversation that had taken place between the two leaders.

When the White House announced that Trump was inviting Putin to the White House while Coats was on stage at a public event, the director of national intelligence services did not hide his true feelings.

"Repeat that?" Coats said, laughing incredulously when the news was transmitted to him on stage.

"It's going to be special," he added.

Sarah Westwood and Kaitlan Collins of CNN contributed to this report.


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