Trump revealed nuclear secrets to Bob Woodward in late night calls

Trump revealed nuclear secrets to Bob Woodward in late night calls on his personal cell and said he had a new ‘weapons system’ that Putin and Xi knew nothing about

  • President Donald Trump revealed a new nuclear weapons system in interviews with Bob Woodward for new book 
  • Trump bragged neither Russian President Vladimir Putin nor Chinese President Xi Jinping knew about it 
  • ‘I have built a nuclear — a weapons system that nobody’s ever had in this country before,’ he said. ‘We have stuff that Putin and Xi have never heard about before’ 
  • Woodward noted sources confirmed weapons system but expressed surprise that President Trump had revealed its existence 
  • Trump may have been referring to a new submarine-launched nuclear warhead, named the W93
  • Its existence is known although the details about it are classified 

President Donald Trump revealed a new nuclear weapons system to Bob Woodward and bragged that he was telling the author something that America’s foreign adversaries had no knowledge of.

In an excerpt of his forthcoming book, ‘Rage,’ Woodward reveals the president told him about the system and noted neither Russian President Vladimir Putin nor Chinese President Xi Jinping knew about it.

The disclosure was made to Woodward in calls from Trump’s private cellphone late at night, as he delivered 18 interviews to the journalist.

It is unclear if any were monitored by White House or national security officials.  

‘I have built a nuclear — a weapons system that nobody’s ever had in this country before. We have stuff that you haven’t even seen or heard about. We have stuff that Putin and Xi have never heard about before. There’s nobody — what we have is incredible,’ Trump said in the excerpt published by The Washington Post.

Although Trump offered no more specifics, one defense expert said he believed the weapon to be a low-yield nuclear weapon suspected to have been deployed on submarines. 

President Donald Trump revealed a new nuclear weapons system in interviews with Bob Woodward for new book

President Donald Trump revealed a new nuclear weapons system in interviews with Bob Woodward for new book

Russian President Vladimir Putin

Chinese President Xi Jinping

President Trump bragged neither Russian President Vladimir Putin (left) nor Chinese President Xi Jinping (right) knew about the new nuclear system


Tape recordings and extracts from the veteran Watergate reporter’s forthcoming book Rage make a series of bombshell revelations.


Trump told Woodward on February 7 that coronavirus was ‘deadly.’ 

‘You just breathe the air and that’s how it’s passed. And so that’s a very tricky one. That’s a very delicate one. It’s also more deadly than even your strenuous flus. This is deadly stuff,’ he said – but did not tell the public what he knew


On January 28, Robert O’Brien told Trump coronavirus ‘will be the biggest national security threat you face in your presidency,’ and said: ‘This is going to be the roughest thing you face.’ Trump then told Americans it was ‘under control’ and would ‘go away.’

And on March 19 Trump said:  ‘I wanted to always play it down. I still like playing it down, because I don’t want to create a panic.’ 


Trump says Kim is ‘far beyond smart,’ and says that the dictator told him ‘everything,’ boasting about how he described the brutal execution of his uncle in a power struggle. 

Woodward reveals Kim Jong-Un’s ‘love letters’ to Trump gushing to ‘Your Excellency’ about ‘holding your hand’ and calling their summit ‘a fantasy film.’

But Woodward also reveals that when Trump was tweeting about ‘Little Rocket Man’ Defense Secretary Jim Mattis was so concerned about escalation that he slept in his clothes.


‘My f***ing generals are a bunch of p***ies,’ Trump ranted in the Oval Office, and said their backing for NATO and an alliance with South Korea was ‘stupid. Costs us $10 billion. We’re suckers.’


Trump said Woodward made George W Bush ‘look like a stupid moron, which he was.’ Of Obama he ranted: ‘I don’t think Obama’s smart … I think he’s highly overrated. And I don’t think he’s a great speaker.’ And he added that Kim Jong-Un called Obama ‘an a**hol.’


Jim Mattis called him ‘dangerous’ and ‘unfit,’ went to pray in Washington National Cathedral, left government because he was ‘basically directed to do something that I thought went beyond stupid to felony stupid’ in reference to pulling troops from Syria, and suggested ‘collective action’ after leaving.

Dan Coats, the director of national intelligence, had ‘deep suspicions’ that Putin had something on him and ‘could not shake them.’

Dr. Tony Fauci called his leadership ‘rudderless,’ his attention span ‘like a minus number’ and said: ‘His sole purpose is to get re-elected.’

Jared Kushner – his son-in-law – said Alice In Wonderland is the key to Trump, saying: ‘If you don’t know where you’re going, any path will get you there.’


Trump described the term ‘white privilege’ as ‘drinking the Kool-Aid’ and repeated his claim he had done more for black Americans than Lincoln, adding: ‘And, honestly, I’m not feeling any love.’


Trump used his private cellphone for late-night calls and revealed he had a ‘weapons system’ which Putin and Xi did not know about.


Woodward writes that additional sources later confirmed that the system but they did not give details. 

He also reported that people had expressed surprise Trump had disclosed the system.

Although the information was highly classified, Trump as president is the ultimate declassification authority and cannot be punished for sharing state secrets. 

Trump gave Woodward his private cell phone number so the two men could talk without aides or other people present, meaning the calls were on an unencrypted line. 

Woodward himself could have been bugged or monitored by foreign powers, although there is no suggestion that he has been. 

Woodward’s book, Rage, which comes out next week, draws from the 18 conversations with Trump between December 2019 and July 2020, that took place in the Oval Office, at Mar-a-Lago and over the phone – occasionally at 9 or 10′ o’clock at night. 

According to Woodward, sometimes he would get unexpected phone calls after 9pm from the president who was reportedly trying to generate a favorable depiction in the book, unlike in Woodward’s 2018 bestseller, Fear. 

Woodward called it the president ‘unburdening himself.’

The nuclear weapons disclosure so far appears to be the only classified secret Trump shared, although the White House is bracing for more tapes when Woodward is interviewed by CBS’ 60 Minutes on Sunday, and more detailed revelations when the book is published. 

James Acton, co-director of the Carnegie Endowment for International Peace’s nuclear policy program, suggested Wednesday that Trump may have been referring  to a new submarine-launched ‘low-yield’ nuclear warhead, named the W93.

Its existence is known although the details about it are classified. 

‘In 2017, the admin announced a plan to reduce the explosive power of some nuclear warheads on submarine-launched missiles. The timing was kept secret. 

‘My guess is that Trump told Woodward about the first deployment before it was made public,’ he wrote on Twitter. 

‘I don’t believe that the US could build an actually new nuclear weapon in secret. Too much money for classified budgets. Too many people involved for it not to leak,’ he added.

In February there were reports that the Pentagon deployed a new nuclear warhead requested, designed and produced by the Trump administration aboard a nuclear submarine. 

Proponents of the weapon wanted the U.S. to have another low-yield nuclear option in order to counter Russia, which has a variety of nuclear systems. 

The low-yield system produces a smaller nuclear blast than other nuclear weapons.

Proponents of such systems say they are more targeted but to critics they increase the likelihood of nuclear weapons being used, and with it the escalation of a war from conventional to nuclear.

Trump has bragged about ‘rebuilding’ a ‘depleted’ military although in reality new nuclear weapons systems take years to produce.

For the national security and intelligence community, the possibility of Russia and China learning either from bugging Woodward, or simply from watching the news, about new weapons systems will be deeply concerning – particularly if U.S. agencies had no idea Trump made the disclosure.

The revelation is only part of the disclosures Trump made to Woodward, which saw him reveal he knew coronavirus was ‘deadly,’ and far more dangerous than flu while telling the public it was like flu, and that he ‘liked to play it down.’ 

Trump is now defending himself claiming he did not want to cause ‘panic.’

But Trump has a history of making public what had previously been closely-guarded secrets. 

One of the best-known incidents was in August last year when he tweeted an image of damage to an Iranian satellite launch pad caused by a launch rocket exploding during testing.

Public images of the damage already existed but were low-quality and the one tweeted by Trump was exceptionally high resolution.

It became clear within hours that it was taken by the National Reconnaissance Office, one of the member agencies of the intelligence community, and had been shown to Trump at the White House.

Amateurs online worked out precisely which KH-11 satellite took the image.

The only previous release of images from a KH-11 satellite had been in 1984 by a Navy analyst who was jailed for espionage.

There have also been claims of sharing intelligence with other world leaders.

In April 2017, Trump told Rodrigo Duerte, the president of the Philippines, that he had stationed two nuclear submarines off the coast of North Korea.

The locations of the submarines, which can include those carrying nuclear missiles, are always intensely-guarded secrets with much of the Navy’s command usually ignorant of where they are, and only captains and some of the crew being precisely certain.

Trump has also faced allegations that he shared Israel’s classified information about ISIS in May 2017 with Sergey Lavrov, Russia’s foreign minister, in an Oval Office meeting where a Russian photographer was also present.

Trump was revealed to have told Lavrov about ISIS’ plans to create laptop bombs to attack airliners – enough for Russia to piece together that the information came from an Israeli spy embedded deep in ISIS territory.

Reports in Israel said the Mossad, its spy agency, feared their asset was at risk of being identified.

The White House initially denied Russia had been told anything, but Trump himself defended telling them about ‘terrorism’ the next day and then the next month telling reporters on a visit to Israel: ‘Folks, folks, just so you understand, just so you understand, I never mentioned the word or the name Israel during that conversation.’