It’s sometimes impossible to comprehend the sheer breadth and depth of Donald Trump’s incompetence in all things related to the position he now occupies. But his ongoing row with his own handpicked intelligence chiefs—including an effort to gaslight America on their testimony sandwiched between furious denials of their assessments—has been a frightening reminder that Trump really does believe he knows “more … than the generals do,” as he told us repeatedly during the 2016 campaign.
It’s the entitlement of a billionaire whose daddy bailed him out of every asinine mistake he ever made, fueled by an addled brain in the thrall of delusions of greatness.
And two years into his administration, TIME reports that intelligence officials are finally breaking their silence to let America know just how truly dangerous Trump’s delusions are to this country’s national security. The biggest problem isn’t just Trump’s ignorance (no, Bhutan and Nepal are not part of India), it’s his “willful ignorance,” as one intelligence official put it, and the fact that he actually erupts in anger when he’s told facts that contradict his own uninformed beliefs. “Two intelligence officers even reported that they have been warned to avoid giving the President intelligence assessments that contradict stances he has taken in public,” writes TIME’s John Walcott.
Trump can’t handle the truth. And while that has been comically demonstrated by episodes like Team Trump’s efforts to convince the world that he had the biggest, baddest inaugural crowd in U.S. history, it’s also frighteningly dangerous when it comes to the life-and-death decisions our commander in chief is tasked with making every single day.
When Defense Secretary Jim Mattis resigned in December, he let the entire world know that Donald Trump didn’t hold the same basic geo-political worldview that has effectively prevented World War III from erupting for the better part of a century.
What the intelligence officials who are increasingly breaking their silence are adding to the conversation is that Trump is constitutionally incapable of forming a geo-political worldview grounded in any type of objective reality. In other words, his foreign policy is about as relevant to U.S. national security concerns playing out on planet Earth as it is to those playing out on Mars.