Trump moves to halt publication of ex-aide's book on White House

Trump moves to halt publication of ex-aide's book on White House

Trump moves to halt publication of ex-aide's book on White House

Excerpts from former national security adviser John Bolton's book about his time in the Trump administration paint a damning view of the president as a "stunningly uninformed" man who was outmatched by the job he was elected to do, according to three newspapers that obtained advance copies of the book.

The civil lawsuit came one day after U.S. President Donald Trump said Bolton would be breaking the law if the book were published.

Trump on Monday told reporters that he considers "every conversation with me as president highly classified".

The manuscript has, however, undergone numerous and ongoing reviews for classified information by the National Security Council, and the date was pushed back to June 23.

"These and innumerable other similar conversations with Trump formed a pattern of fundamentally unacceptable behavior that eroded the very legitimacy of the presidency", Bolton wrote of the abuses.

Attorney General William Barr, seated near Trump, said Bolton "hasn't completed the process" of pre-publication review, as required.

Bolton says Trump told Xi Jinping China should go ahead with building camps the regime was constructing for Chinese Uighurs. Jameel Jaffer, executive director at the Knight First Amendment Institute at Columbia University, said a lawsuit by the administration would likely fail as a matter of prior restraint. "Prior restraints squelch speech before it occurs and nearly always sweep too broadly".

The book provides an insider account of Trump's "inconsistent, scattershot decision-making process", the publisher has said.

The American government is arguing that the former national security adviser's publication contains classified information "that can not be released to the public", the New York Post is reporting.

"This is the book Donald Trump doesn't want you to read", Bolton's office and publisher said in a statement promoting "In The Room Where It Happened: A White House Memoir". But of the inquiry that focused on holding the presidency accountable, Bolton wrote that "had Democratic impeachment advocates not been so obsessed with their Ukraine blitzkrieg in 2019, had they taken the time to inquire more systematically about Trump's behavior across his entire foreign policy, the impeachment outcome might well have been different". Probably not. As NBC News' report added, "Legal experts predicted that the lawsuit would be unable to stop publication".

While progressives have denounced Bolton for his blood-thirsty foreign policy views and hawkish invectives against a more peaceful world, curiosity about what the former diplomat might spill about what he claims to have witnessed when advising Trump remains.

"The unauthorised disclosure of classified information could be exploited by a foreign power, thereby causing significant harm to the national security of the United States", Eisenberg wrote, telling Bolton that a redacted manuscript would be returned to him June 19, just days before the already-published book is due to go on sale.

Shortly after he began in his post, Bolton was told by former chief of staff John Kelly, "You can't imagine how desperate I am to get out of here".

"This is a transparent attempt to use national security as a pretext to censor Mr. Bolton, in violation of his constitutional right to speak on matters of the utmost public import", Cooper continued. The administration says Bolton's publisher pushed out a press release last week with no advance notice and without fully complying with confidentiality agreements and efforts to remove sensitive material from the final product.

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