When they searched Donald Trump’s house on Monday, FBI agents reportedly looked for classified materials related to nuclear weapons among other things.
Nuclear weapons documents were reportedly thought to be in the cache the FBI was looking for at Trump’s Mar-a-Lago property, according to sources familiar with the inquiry quoted in The Washington Post. They didn’t say what kind of documents they were or whether they applied to US or foreign arsenals.
After confirming that he had personally approved the government’s request for a search warrant and disclosing that the justice department had petitioned a Florida court to unseal the warrant, emphasizing that Trump himself had made the search public, the report was released just hours later.
“The public’s clear and powerful interest in understanding what occurred in its contents” was mentioned in the justice department motion.
In a later statement, Trump said that rather than opposing the “prompt release of those records,” he was “encouraging the release of those documents” regarding the “unAmerican, unlawful, and unnecessary raid and break-in… Release the files right away!
On Friday morning, Trump added on his belief that the “nuclear weapons issue is a hoax” via his social media platform Truth Social, comparing it to other investigations he has previously referred to as hoaxes, such as the Mueller investigation into claims of collusion between his 2016 election campaign and the Russian government and his historic double impeachment.
He stated, adding, “Some unscrupulous people involved. Planting information, anyone?”
Following a strong outcry from Trump supporters who claimed the search was politically motivated, Garland made her announcement. On Thursday, police shot and killed a guy who had attempted to break into the FBI’s Cincinnati headquarters and fled the scene.
The government was ordered to present its motion to Donald Trump’s attorneys and report by Friday at 3 p.m. on whether Trump opposed to the warrant being made public.
The New York Times, CBS, the Washington Post, CNN, and NBC have requested that the court make all information regarding the FBI search at Mar-a-Lago public.
Garland’s politically fraught action of ordering FBI agents into the home of a former president may have been motivated by the rumored presence of nuclear weapons documents at Mar-a-Lago, as collecting them would be perceived as a national security priority.
While in the White House, Trump was particularly fascinated with the US nuclear arsenal and boasted about having access to top-secret intelligence.
In the summer of 2017, he reportedly demanded an arsenal ten times larger than what it was at its peak during the Cold War, which prompted the then-secretary of state, Rex Tillerson, to call him a “fucking fool.” Trump made a bold threat to destroy Afghanistan and North Korea.
We have things that you haven’t even seen or heard about, the former president reportedly told Bob Woodward in his book about the Trump administration, Rage. We have information that Putin and Xi have never seen or heard about. Nobody exists; what we have is extraordinary.
Officials were “surprised” that Trump had revealed the existence of an unnamed new weapon system, according to Woodward, who later received confirmation of the claim.
According to Cheryl Rofer, a chemist who worked on nuclear weapons at the Los Alamos National Laboratory, different types of documentation fall under different categorization categories.
“Data about nuclear weapon design is referred to as Restricted Data and is ‘born classified.’ That implies that material is presumed to be classified unless declassified, remarked Rofer on Twitter. Rofer runs the blog Nuclear Diner. There is no justification, she continued, “that I can see, for a president to have knowledge of nuclear weapon design.”
The secret edition of the Nuclear Posture Review, which examines US capabilities and policy, would be one of the nuclear documents that Trump would frequently have had access to. It would be rare for those documents to be removed from the “nuclear football,” a suitcase holding nuclear strike options, which is always carried by a military aide next to the president.
Rofer also suggested that Trump might have kept his nuclear “biscuit,” a piece of plastic similar to a credit card that contains the identification numbers required for nuclear launch. However, those codes would have been modified as soon as Biden assumed office at noon on January 20, 2021.
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