President Trump ‘Asked Aides If He Could Invade Venezuela’

It must take a lot for people around President Trump to be shocked by what comes out of his mouth, but that bar was reportedly vaulted over when he asked if he could lead an invasion of Venezuela. The president is reported to have posed the question at a meeting last August while discussing sanctions against the country. According to the Associated Press, Trump turned to his aides and asked why couldn’t the U.S. just invade to deal with President Nicolas Maduro, rather than using sanctions. The suggestion is said to have “stunned” those present at the meeting, including then U.S. Secretary of State Rex Tillerson and national security adviser H.R. McMaster. The officials explained to Trump that military action could backfire and risk a backlash from Latin American governments but Trump went on to raise the prospect of military action again with Colombian President Juan Manuel Santos, according to an unnamed U.S. official.