Once again, Trump undermines U.S. national security, this time by handing out his cellphone number

The Associated Press reports: President Donald Trump has been handing out his cellphone number to world leaders and urging them to call him directly, an unusual invitation that breaks diplomatic protocol and is raising concerns about the security and secrecy of the U.S. commander in chief’s communications.

Trump has urged leaders of Canada and Mexico to reach him on his cellphone, according to former and current U.S. officials with direct knowledge of the practice. Of the two, only Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau has taken advantage of the offer so far, the officials said.

Trump also exchanged numbers with French President Emmanuel Macron when the two spoke immediately following Macron’s victory earlier this month, according to a French official, who would not comment on whether Macron intended to use the line.

All the officials demanded anonymity because they were not authorized to reveal the conversations. Neither the White House nor Trudeau’s office responded to requests for comment.

The notion of world leaders calling each other up via cellphone may seem unremarkable in the modern, mobile world. But in the diplomatic arena, where leader-to-leader calls are highly orchestrated affairs, it is another notable breach of protocol for a president who has expressed distrust of official channels. The formalities and discipline of diplomacy have been a rough fit for Trump — who, before taking office, was long easily accessible by cellphone and viewed himself as freewheeling, impulsive dealmaker.

Presidents generally place calls on one of several secure phone lines, including those in the White House Situation Room, the Oval Office or the presidential limousine. Even if Trump uses his government-issued cellphone, his calls are vulnerable to eavesdropping, particularly from foreign governments, national security experts say. [Continue reading…]

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One thought on “Once again, Trump undermines U.S. national security, this time by handing out his cellphone number

  1. izopnyde

    There should be a RED PHONE and a RED LINE dedicated to Russia laying about somewhere. It was put them in the late 50’s. It was liberaly used by President Kennedy, JFK, during the bay of pigs debacle when we were about to declare thermal nuclear war. It’s about as secure as modern day surveillance can prevent.
    Why this Administration has decided to persue what can only be described as a covert operation engaged with the Russians. To what end we shall never know. If this POTUS wishes to engage with them ther are PROTOCOLS that MUST BE FOLLOWED in order to keep This Nation safe. And that’s the bottom line. I’m really having trouble understanding this POTUS cavalier attitude and think that just maybe curbing his forked tongue is in order. Or better yet keep his double hinged jaws shut and take his tongue out of the gutter all together.
    Beyond that, perhaps they could hook up The RED PHONE with a RED LINE and put it in the vicinity of the button he uses to order a soft drink. This way he can call all of his favorite despots without worry. Safety First.

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