President Donald Trump reportedly asked Homeland Security officials whether a nuclear blast could be used to disrupt hurricanes before they made landfall, according to Axios.
Jonathan Swan delivered the details in his Sunday newsletter, citing sources familiar with a memo that came out of a 2017 hurricane briefing:
During one hurricane briefing at the White House, Trump said, “I got it. I got it. Why don’t we nuke them?” according to one source who was there. “They start forming off the coast of Africa, as they’re moving across the Atlantic, we drop a bomb inside the eye of the hurricane and it disrupts it. Why can’t we do that?” the source added, paraphrasing the president’s remarks.
The briefer “was knocked back on his heels,” the source in the room added. “You could hear a gnat fart in that meeting. People were astonished. After the meeting ended, we thought, ‘What the f—? What do we do with this?'” https://t.co/qy3H1avs8l
— Jonathan Swan (@jonathanvswan) August 25, 2019
Critics of the president — including 2020 Democratic presidential hopeful and California Sen. Kamala Harris — were quick to jump on the news. (RELATED: Here’s What You Absolutely Need To Know For Hurricane Season)
Dude’s gotta go.https://t.co/iZp6EExhF9
— Kamala Harris (@KamalaHarris) August 25, 2019
Are we really just going to sit back and do NOTHING when Trump is earnestly suggesting using NUCLEAR WEAPONS to attack Hurricanes?! For God’s sake, DO SOMETHING. #ImpeachTrumpNow https://t.co/gldIWOKOn5
— Debra Messing (@DebraMessing) August 25, 2019
We’re all going to die https://t.co/uptKaP3iFG
— Molly Jong-Fast (@MollyJongFast) August 25, 2019
— Richard Marx (@richardmarx) August 25, 2019
Obama only had regular hurricanes.
Trump wants nuclear-infused hurricanes.
— Jesse Ferguson (@JesseFFerguson) August 25, 2019
A low-information voter would almost certainly dismiss this as parody: https://t.co/sT9J2lyNDm
— Kevin Robillard (@Robillard) August 25, 2019
Trump is stone cold sober but all his ideas sound like something you come up with when you’re super high:
– we should just nuke the hurricanes
– how much would it cost to buy Greenland
– hear me out: SPACE FORCE
– fuck it let’s order 600 burgers pic.twitter.com/sCfPb5B2oi
— Dan Amira (@DanAmira) August 26, 2019
It’s Trump’s boyish, TV-fueled macho posturing: Nukes are huge, powerful, and attention-grabbing; so is Trump. Therefore we should build a lot more of them and maybe use them against hurricanes or Afghanistan. US national security as an action movie. https://t.co/GRHL2F7EIQ
— Robert E Kelly (@Robert_E_Kelly) August 26, 2019
Film director Peter Ramsey referenced the cult SyFy movie “Sharknado,” noting that the theory had been tested onscreen before.
Whatever the cost don’t let him watch SHARKNADO https://t.co/jiZH6EOZxg
— Peter Ramsey (@pramsey342) August 25, 2019
The Axios report also noted that the suggestion to nuke hurricanes was only added to the memo because everything the president said was recorded. No further attempts were made to push the idea, and it “never entered a formal policy process.”