Sources: Trump Lashed Out in Meeting on Afghan War
He suggested firing top US commander because 'we aren't winning'
By Rob Quinn,  Newser Staff
Posted Aug 3, 2017 1:46 AM CDT
Commander of the Resolute Support mission and US Forces in Afghanistan Army Gen. John W. Nicholson speaks during the opening ceremony of the "Invictus Games" in Kabul.   (AP Photos/Massoud Hossaini)
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(Newser) – President Trump isn't happy about the situation in Afghanistan and his proposed solution is one that will be familiar to Celebrity Apprentice viewers, insiders say. Sources tell Reuters that during a July 19 meeting in the White House Situation Room, an angry Trump said military leaders should consider firing Gen. John Nicholson, commander of US forces in Afghanistan, over his performance. "We aren't winning," Trump said, per the sources, described as senior administration officials. "We are losing." Trump also complained about NATO allies and said the US should demand some of Afghanistan's estimated $1 trillion mineral wealth, the officials say.

Trump complained that China was profiting from Afghanistan's mineral wealth under a deal set up a decade ago. According to NBC's sources, Trump "startled" military advisers including Defense Secretary James Mattis with an anecdote comparing their advice to that of a New York restaurant consultant who cost a business profits with lousy advice about renovating a kitchen. He suggested the owner should have talked to the waiters instead. Trump ended the two-hour meeting without a decision on a new US strategy for South Asia. Pentagon sources say Mattis returned from the meeting "visibly upset" and went for a long walk to clear his head.

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