Rage: Bob Woodward’s Insight Into the Presidency of Donald Trump


Brendan Smialowski

President Trump during the daily press briefing on the coronavirus pandemic on March 17, 2020, at the White House in Washington D.C. (Photo Credit: Getty/Brendan Smialowski) (Courtesy of CBS)

In his new book, called “Rage,” Bob Woodward opens up and discloses the content discussed in eighteen interviews with President Donald Trump since December 2019. This is his second book on the Trump administration, following the release of the book “Fear” in September 2018. Woodward, a journalist that works for the Washington Post, has written eleven books on the Presidency since Bill Clinton was president.

In his new book, Bob Woodward reveals his discussions with President Trump during the last few months (Photograph by Jonathan Ernst / Reuters) (Courtesy of the New Yorker). (Jonathan Ernst)

Woodward revealed that during one of their phone calls, the president admitted that he had downplayed the coronavirus. “I wanted to, I wanted to always play it down, I still like playing it down because I don’t want to create a panic,” Trump said on a March 19 phone call with Woodward. Furthermore, in one of the inter

Bob Woodward’s new book, “Rage” (Photo Credit: Jim Lo Scalzo/EPA, via Shutterstock) (Courtesy of the New York Times). (Jim Lo Scalzo)

views, President Trump privately acknowledged that the coronavirus was more deadly than the flu, but later contradicted the statement in a public press conference.

This revelation comes as the nation is struggling to battle the coronavirus, which has infected more than 6.5 million people and left more than 196,000 people dead in the U.S. alone, according to the CDC.

In his book, Woodward also writes about President Trump’s relationship with North Korean dictator Kim Jong Un. Woodward had been given access to 27  “love letters,” as the president describes it, between Trump and Kim Jong Un. These letters were written after Trump met with Kim three times in various places. However, Trump has not persuaded North Korea to dismantle or even to reduce the size of its nuclear program, with no more success than previous presidents who have attempted this feat before.

The Black Lives Matter movement and racial justice were brought up by Woodward in some of the interviews, though the president wasn’t able to understand the grievances of the African-American people. “…And do you have any sense that that privilege has isolated and put you in a cave, to a certain extent, as it put me— and I think lots of White, privileged people— in a cave and that we have to work our way out of it to understand the anger and the pain, particularly, Black people feel in this country? Do you see?” Woodward said in an interview. The president replied by saying that he didn’t understand or feel any anger or pain at all. Trump also told Woodward that has “done a tremendous amount for the Black community,” and that he was “not feeling the love.”

Bob Woodward at American Jewish University in Los Angeles, California, on April 7, 2019 (Photo Credit: Michael Kovac/Getty Images) (Courtesy of Vox). (MIchael Kovac)

“Rage” also provides several accounts of officials who were departed from the Trump administration including Secretary of Defense James Mattis, former Director of National Intelligence Dan Coats, former Secretary of State Rex Tillerson, and other people close to them. These accounts include their problematic relationships with the president and their misgivings about him. “To him a lie is not a lie. It’s just what he thinks. He doesn’t know the difference between the truth and a lie,” Coats said of the president.

Woodward’s new book focuses on many issues gripping the nation, shows accounts of officials who used to work for the president and others who have worked with him in the last few years, and gives an inside look at what the president keeps from the public.

“Rage” was released on September 15, and can be purchased directly from the publisher, Simon & Schuster.