Trump threatens NBC's license over 'fake news' report

Pauline Gross
October 12, 2017

U.S. Sen. Brian Schatz (D-Hawai'i), Ranking Member of the Senate Subcommittee on Communications, Technology, Innovation and the Internet, released the following statement today after President Donald Trump threatened to challenge NBC's broadcast license.

In his tweet earlier in the day Trump raised the possibility of the broadcast licenses of NBC and other networks being challenged.

Trump's morning tweets came after NBC News reported that Trump purportedly told senior national security advisers during a meeting last summer that he favored what amounted to almost a tenfold increase in nuclear weapons.

"I know the capability that we have; believe me, and it is awesome, it is massive, and when they make up stories like that that's just made up", Trump said in the Oval.

Trump denied requesting more weapons.

Russia's TASS news agency quoted North Korean Foreign Minister Ri Yong Ho as saying: "With his bellicose and insane statement at the United Nations, Trump, you can say, has lit the wick of a war against us".

Trump's advisers at the July 20 meeting included Secretary of State Rex Tillerson and the Joint Chiefs of Staff, who were reportedly surprised by Trump's comment.

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"It's frankly disgusting the way the press is able to write whatever they want to write, and people should look into it", Trump said to a group of reporters on Wednesday.

Secretary of State Rex Tillerson dismissed an NBC News article last week claiming he had considered resigning.

The threat provoked widespread anger on social media and elsewhere with many attacking the president for directly challenging the First Amendment, which guarantees the freedom of the press.

If the United States were to increase its nuclear arsenal, that could break with years of doctrine and violate worldwide disarmament treaties that have been signed over the years by every president since the late Ronald Reagan.

"(To have) 10 times what we have right now, it's totally unnecessary", Trump said.

The Federal Communications Commission issues broadcasting licenses in the United States largely to ensure stations don't trip over each other when transmitting.

The news comes at a time when Trump is expected within days to declare that Iran is not fulfilling its obligations under a 2015 anti-nuclear-proliferation deal it made with the Obama administration.

Other reports by GizPress

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