Omarosa Manigault Newman released two more secret recordings Monday, and Donald Trump is heard on tape discussing among other things Hillary Clinton, the Steele dossier and the deadly Niger ambush in which four U.S. service members were killed in October 2017.
The first recording—which was initially released on The View and then later aired on MSNBC—was made during an October 2017 meeting between senior communications staff members. The topic of the meeting was tax reform, but according to NBC, Trump crashed the meeting to discuss a dossier compiled by British Intelligence officer Christopher Steele in which Steele alleged that there was collusion between Russia and the Trump campaign—among other things.
Current White House press secretary Sarah Huckabee Sanders and former White House communications director Hope Hicks can be heard on the recording speaking with the president in an exchange Manigault Newman told MSNBC went on for fifteen minutes. When the conversation was over, Trump reportedly had staffers stick around so he could “rant” on other topics as well.
Manigault Newman said the second recording she released is from an Oct. 27, 2017 communications team meeting. She accuses the president of “mocking” the “deaths of soldiers” when he says the following on the recording:
We had 3.2 last quarter before this, so it’s really, it’s really going good. And we have a lot of things happening on the economic front. I think the military’s doing good. And now, on Niger. So, what happens is we’re decimated — You know, it’s a rough business. They’re rough too, they wanna kill us.
We’ve let the military do what they have to do. And whether you call it rules of engagement or any way you want to say it, but we’ve let them do. And in the Middle East, there’s very few left. We really — we’ve done a very good job. We’ve done more in 7 months, because really it’s 7 months that we’ve started — we’ve done more in 7 months than they’ve done in 8 years, okay? And so we’re — But what happens, is now they flee, and they flee to Africa, and they flee to Niger, and countries around there. And that’s how these [inaudible] people get attacked, and they got attacked by 50 real fighters.
These were people in many cases, that were in the Middle East, that now go to Africa to try and, you know, cause problems there. And ultimately they wanna come back here, because this is where they really wanna be. So it’s a rough uh, business. I wouldn’t, I don’t think I’d want to be a terrorist right now. [laughter] It’s not a good life, but it’s uh, the only thing that — What else is there? But um, but that is — You know, people don’t say that. The reason they’re there, is because we forced them out, and it’s not nearly as many, it’s not nearly as intense, but it’s pretty intense, you see that happening. So that’s that.
Manigault Newman alleged that none of the people in the meeting had security clearance to be discussing Niger.
“They were laughing because he’s like making light of the situation, he’s saying, ‘Well I wouldn’t want to be a terrorist,' Manigault Newman said, “but it’s not a laughing matter we lost four American soldiers and four of our allies, the Nigerien troops that we were fighting alongside.”
U.S. Army Sgt. La David Johnson died in the Niger ambush, and Trump came under fire after he told Johnson’s widow during a phone call that her husband “must’ve known what he signed up for.”
Trump denied making the statement at the time.
“You have to question how seriously he takes the people who put their lives on the line for this country,” Manigault Newman said. “When people say come forward and give us proof he’s unfit, give us proof he’s unhinged, here is it, Donald Trump raw, showing you just how unhinged, how inappropriate he is.”