"While I generally enjoy reading fiction, this is a uniquely Washington brand of literature, and his anonymous sources do not lend credibility", the defence secretary had said.
"Well before this week's revelations about President Trump's interactions with Defence Secretary Jim Mattis in Bob Woodward's new book, officials inside the White House have been actively discussing who will replace Mattis at the Pentagon whenever he might step down, the daily reported".
Woodward describes Trump regularly insulting key members of his own team, who are in turn contemptuous of the president. "We're doing this to prevent World War III", Mattis was quoted as telling the president.
Indeed, perhaps the most stunning and inexplicable response to the op-ed was that of the D.C. press corps, many of whom sniffed that nothing in the opinion piece was new, since they hear such talk from White House staffers on a regular basis.
"Time and time again people will deny things", Woodward says. "Man versus man. Me versus Kim".More news: May's Brexit plans opposed by 80 rebels in her party - former minister
More news: Alibaba founder Jack Ma to step down as chairman in September 2019
More news: Arizona DPS head Milstead defends tweet criticizing Nike, Kaepernick ad
Insider accounts of the Trump White House make a ton of money. We also learned that Gary Cohn, one of President Trump's advisors, lifted a letter off Trump's desk so that the president wouldn't act on his worrisome threat to scuttle a trade deal with South Korea.
The tweet never was sent because of a back-channel message from the North Koreans that they would view it as a sign the U.S. was preparing to attack, according to CBS.
Yet the tweet wasn't sent because a back channel message from North Korea warned that the country would see such a pullout as a sign the United States was going to attack.
Asked what he had concluded, Woodward told CBS: "That people better wake up to what's going on".
"People who work for him are anxious ... that he will sign things or give orders that threaten the national security or the financial security of the country, or of the world", Woodward said on CBS.
Relations between Trump and Kim have grown stale since their summit in June, where both parties pledged to move towards denuclearizing the Korean peninsula. It asserted that Trump "shows a preference for autocrats and dictators, such as President Vladimir Putin of Russian Federation and North Korea's leader, Kim Jong Un, and displays little genuine appreciation for the ties that bind us to allied, like-minded nations".