President Donald Trump is once again claiming he knows best -- this time, criticizing the past military and political leadership for the timeline of the Osama bin Laden capture.
The issue re-emerged Sunday in a taped interview with Fox News' Chris Wallace. Pivoting from a question about retired Adm. William McRaven's criticism over the President's treatment of the press, Trump lashed out. He took aim at McRaven, the architect of the bin Laden raid, and Pakistan for what he claimed was their cover up of bin Laden's whereabouts.
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Trump called McRaven a "Hillary Clinton backer and an Obama backer," which McRaven disputed. And bin Laden, the President told Wallace, was "living in Pakistan right next to the military academy. Everybody in Pakistan knew he was there. And we give Pakistan $1.3 billion a year and they don't tell him."
On Monday, Trump again returned to the issue of bin Laden, claiming the intelligence community should have read his 2000 book, "The America We Deserve," in which he mentioned bin Laden and, separately, predicted a major terror attack.
He slammed former President Bill Clinton, who he said "famously missed his shot" to take out the September 11 mastermind, and railed against previous US aid to Pakistan.
"Of course we should have captured Osama Bin Laden long before we did," Trump tweeted. "I pointed him out in my book just BEFORE the attack on the World Trade Center. President Clinton famously missed his shot. We paid Pakistan Billions of Dollars & they never told us he was living there. Fools!"
He continued: "We no longer pay Pakistan the $Billions because they would take our money and do nothing for us, Bin Laden being a prime example, Afghanistan being another. They were just one of many countries that take from the United States without giving anything in return. That's ENDING!"
At the time, Trump had praised the success of the Obama administration's bin Laden mission.
"I want to personally congratulate President Obama and the men and women of the Armed Forces for a job well done," Trump had said, according to Politico. "I am so proud to see Americans standing shoulder to shoulder, waving the American flag in celebration of this great victory,"
Pakistani Prime Minister Imran Khan hit back at Trump's claims, saying that the "record needs to be put straight on Mr Trump's tirade against Pakistan."
"Our tribal areas were devastated & millions of ppl uprooted from their homes. The war drastically impacted lives of ordinary Pakistanis," Khan wrote.
"Instead of making Pakistan a scapegoat for their failures, the US should do a serious assessment of why, despite 140000 NATO troops plus 250,000 Afghan troops & reportedly $1 trillion spent on war in Afghanistan, the Taliban today are stronger than before," Khan tweeted.
Retired Gen. Stanley McChrystal, who served alongside McRaven, criticized Trump's narrative on Monday.
"The President is simply wrong. He is uninformed, and he is pushing an idea that I think is not helpful," McCrystal, who has been critical of Trump, told CNN's Jim Sciutto.