'Hurricane Gun:' Trump Asked if China Was Launching Storms at U.S.

  

Category:  News & Politics

Via:  john-russell  •  2 weeks ago  •  23 comments

By:   Adam Rawnsley (Rolling Stone)

'Hurricane Gun:' Trump Asked if China Was Launching Storms at U.S.
Trump, the then-leader of the free world, also inquired whether the U.S. could bomb China in retaliation for the alleged hurricane attack

S E E D E D   C O N T E N T



Trump wanted to know if "hurricane guns" — which are not a thing — were a thing

The then-leader of the free world also inquired whether the U.S. could bomb China in retaliation for the alleged hurricane attack

Near the beginning of Donald Trump's time in office, the then-president had a pressing question for his national-security aides and administration officials: Does China have the secret technology — a weapon, even — to create large, man-made hurricanes and then launch them at the United States? And if so, would this constitute an act of war by a foreign power, and could the U.S. retaliate militarily? Then-President Trump repeatedly asked about this, according to two former senior administration officials and a third person briefed on the matter.

"It was almost too stupid for words," said a former Trump official intimately familiar with the then-sitting president's inquiry. "I did not get the sense he was joking at all."

The sources, who spoke on the condition of anonymity to discuss private conversations, tell Rolling Stone that Trump began interrogating national-security officials and other staffers about the alleged weapon during the first year of his presidency, and his question would pop up sporadically until at least 2018. Two of the sources recalled that as Trump got deeper into the second year in his term, he started to drop the topic, and occasionally joked about it.

In certain circles within the upper ranks of Trumpland, the then-leader of the free world's query became such a mockable occurrence that it became known among some as the "Hurricane Gun" thing.

"I was present [once] when he asked if China 'made' hurricanes to send to us," said the other former senior official. Trump "wanted to know if the technology existed. One guy in the room responded, 'Not to the best of my knowledge, sir.' I kept it together until I got back to my office… I do not know where the [then-]president would have heard about that… He was asking about it around the time, maybe a little before, he asked people about nuking hurricanes."

This patently boneheaded line of inquiry from Trump, which has not been previously reported, was merely one instance in an administration overflowing with Trump's rampantly absurd, conspiracy-theory-powered ideas and policy proposals, many of which were ignored or shot down, thus avoiding additional atrocities. Last week, it was revealed that Trump's former Secretary of Defense Mark Esper wrote in his new memoir that his ex-boss wanted to attack Mexico with missiles — during peacetime between the two nations — and then try to pin the blame on another country.

Despite leaving office in disgrace, Trump has continued on as the undisputed leader of the Republican Party and by far its most popular and influential national figure. He is currently the clear favorite to win the 2024 GOP presidential nomination, should he ultimately decide to launch another campaign. Though a final decision has not yet been made, Trump has strongly signaled to a variety of associates and counselors that he intends to run again, having made it his mission to turn his anti-democratic lies about the 2020 election being "stolen" from him into party orthodoxy.

A Trump spokesperson did not provide comment on this story.

"That does not surprise me at all," says Stephanie Grisham, a former top Trump aide who has since had a very public break with the Trumps. Though Grisham said she was not privy to the "Hurricane Gun" chatter, she simply noted: "Stuff like that was not unusual for him. He would blurt out crazy things all the time, and tell aides to look into it or do something about it. His staff would say they'd look into knowing that more often than not, he'd forget about it quickly — much like a toddler."

Trump's "hurricane gun" inquiries add to a list of odd beliefs the former president holds not just about climate science in general — which he has called a hoax "created by and for the Chinese" — but hurricanes in particular. During the 2019 hurricane season, Trump insisted on telling the public that Hurricane Dorian was headed towards Alabama, which no models had predicted. Trump later appeared with a map that appeared to have been edited to include a projection of the storm hitting Alabama. The incident, dubbed Sharpiegate for Trump's erroneous marking of a map, led to an inspector general's report which concluded that the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration had falsely backed up Trump's claim about the hurricane's path as a result of White House pressure.

At times, Trump's comments about possible Wile E Coyote-style weapons have touched on similarly bizarre ideas mulled by the U.S. during the Cold War.

During the 2019 hurricane season, Trump reportedly kept suggesting to aides that the U.S. bomb hurricanes with nuclear weapons in the mistaken belief that the explosions would somehow mitigate or destroy the tropical storms — an idea first floated by eccentric Cold War scientists working on Project Plowshare, which tried to brainstorm peaceful uses for nuclear weapons.

The U.S. Air Force's Project Popeye aimed to use cloud seeding — dropping salts and dry ice into clouds in order to induce rain and snowfall — to try and defeat the insurgency in South Vietnam.

"The idea behind it was that we could we slow down weapons and materials getting from North to South Vietnam via the Ho Chi Minh trail by creating a monsoon season year round so that trail would be unpassable," explains Vince Houghton, a historian whose book, Nuking the Moon, chronicles some of the more bizarre failed weapons of the Cold War.

While cloud seeding works to create precipitation, it can't create hurricanes, which inflict damage primarily through strong winds and high storm surges rather than rainfall. But China's investment in cloud-seeding technology for agricultural production and disaster mitigation has prompted conspiracy theories in the kinds of right-wing fever swamps that often inform MAGA discourse.

More recently, right-wing believers in the QAnon conspiracy theories have taken to arguing that President Joe Biden used a Chinese-made weather weapon to send the freezing weather that crippled Texas power lines as Sen. Ted Cruz fled to Cancun, Mexico.


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JohnRussell
Professor Principal
1  seeder  JohnRussell    2 weeks ago

And people think Joe Biden is "confused". 

 
 
 
Tessylo
Professor Principal
1.1  Tessylo  replied to  JohnRussell @1    2 weeks ago

They see that fucking moron as some kind of savvy genius.

Mindboggling!

 
 
 
JohnRussell
Professor Principal
1.1.1  seeder  JohnRussell  replied to  Tessylo @1.1    2 weeks ago

"Stuff like that was not unusual for him. He would blurt out crazy things all the time, and tell aides to look into it or do something about it. His staff would say they'd look into knowing that more often than not, he'd forget about it quickly — much like a toddler."

 
 
 
Ozzwald
Professor Quiet
1.2  Ozzwald  replied to  JohnRussell @1    2 weeks ago
And people think Joe Biden is "confused".

Trump is also the guy that believes stealth fighter jets are invisible.

 
 
 
Just Jim NC TttH
Masters Principal
1.2.1  Just Jim NC TttH  replied to  Ozzwald @1.2    2 weeks ago

They are virtually to conventional radar or at longer ranges. Read up......................

 
 
 
Trout Giggles
Professor Principal
1.2.2  Trout Giggles  replied to  Just Jim NC TttH @1.2.1    2 weeks ago

Yes, they are invisible to radar. But he believed they were physically invisible.

 
 
 
Ozzwald
Professor Quiet
1.2.3  Ozzwald  replied to  Just Jim NC TttH @1.2.1    2 weeks ago
They are virtually to conventional radar or at longer ranges. Read up.

You will try to spin anything that makes Trump look bad.  I suggest you look up the video of him discussing it.  I know you won't, but still feel the need to offer the suggestion.

 
 
 
Just Jim NC TttH
Masters Principal
1.2.4  Just Jim NC TttH  replied to  Ozzwald @1.2.3    2 weeks ago

I looked it up and yes, he did say it. I didn't fucking say he didn't. All I said was what I said. 

 
 
 
Ozzwald
Professor Quiet
1.2.5  Ozzwald  replied to  Just Jim NC TttH @1.2.4    one week ago
I looked it up and yes, he did say it. I didn't fucking say he didn't. All I said was what I said.

Then why did you try to spin it? 

 
 
 
Just Jim NC TttH
Masters Principal
1.2.6  Just Jim NC TttH  replied to  Ozzwald @1.2.5    one week ago

Why do you always argue things that you imagine someone said/was doing? It's irritating as hell.

 
 
 
Texan1211
Professor Principal
1.2.7  Texan1211  replied to  Just Jim NC TttH @1.2.6    one week ago
Why do you always argue things that you imagine someone said/was doing? It's irritating as hell.

It is at the point of just being a very bad habit now.

 
 
 
Ozzwald
Professor Quiet
1.2.8  Ozzwald  replied to  Just Jim NC TttH @1.2.6    one week ago

Why do you always argue things that you imagine someone said/was doing? It's irritating as hell.

I don't have to imagine it, I just need to scroll upward.

 
 
 
Right Down the Center
Freshman Guide
1.3  Right Down the Center  replied to  JohnRussell @1    2 weeks ago

Yes they do. And they are right.

 
 
 
Buzz of the Orient
Professor Principal
2  Buzz of the Orient    2 weeks ago

To be filed along with Israeli Space Lasers as Republican fantasies.

 
 
 
Just Jim NC TttH
Masters Principal
3  Just Jim NC TttH    2 weeks ago

This was all covered in your last "outlandish behavior" hit piece...........

Pay particular attention to the thread beginning at 7.1 and then on to the thread beginning at 7.2 and read ALL the commentary.

It covers it all...................................................You're welcome

 
 
 
Jeremy Retired in NC
PhD Guide
3.1  Jeremy Retired in NC  replied to  Just Jim NC TttH @3    2 weeks ago
the thread beginning at 7.1

Only because my comment at 7 calling that seed what it was (and what this one is), was deleted.

 
 
 
Trout Giggles
Professor Principal
3.2  Trout Giggles  replied to  Just Jim NC TttH @3    2 weeks ago

why do you guys have to shit all over John's seeds? You could just move along. I think you guys enjoy taunting, trolling, and taking virtual shits all over "liberal" seeds just so you can "own" the libs. You guys aren't funny anymore

 
 
 
Just Jim NC TttH
Masters Principal
3.2.1  Just Jim NC TttH  replied to  Trout Giggles @3.2    2 weeks ago

[Deleted] Has nothing to do with owning the libs. 

You could just move along.

When I see bullshit and "bamboozling" going on, I am not going to just pass it by. As I am sure you don't. In fact I KNOW you don't. If he didn't constantly post that kind of stuff there would be no need. The only seeds I comment negatively on of his are the Trump ones that he searches for on a daily basis. Some of his others and a lot of his comments on his not Trump subject seeds, I vote up.

Your comment history tells the tale. And it is not to be funny. Far from it.

 
 
 
JohnRussell
Professor Principal
3.2.2  seeder  JohnRussell  replied to  Trout Giggles @3.2    2 weeks ago

[Deleted]

All these years I have never much flagged anyone. But I have decided to flag every comment from the right that has the letters TDS in it.   Use of that ridiculous term is trolling , and I will flag it every time I see it until the mods start deleting it. 

 
 
 
Drinker of the Wry
Freshman Expert
3.2.3  Drinker of the Wry  replied to  JohnRussell @3.2.2    2 weeks ago

[Deleted]

 
 
 
Gsquared
Junior Principal
4  Gsquared    2 weeks ago

All Trump needed to do was take his Sharpie and draw on the hurricane map, again.  That would have proved everything.

 
 
 
Trout Giggles
Professor Principal
5  Trout Giggles    2 weeks ago

I don't know how these people stood it. I would have been fired the first day for either laughing too loud or shouting "What the fuck is wrong with you?"

 
 
 
Right Down the Center
Freshman Guide
6  Right Down the Center    2 weeks ago

Donald says some pretty dumb things. He probably gets credit for saying dumb things he never actually said,especially when a book sale is involved. He says some stream of consciousness things that are not well thought through. He says some things to be provocative and see how many liberals and pundits heads he can make explode.  I learned a long time ago not to take what he says literally or too seriously and pay more attention to his actions without the CNN/msnbc  spin. It seems alot of people would rather hang on every word and work themselves into a daily tizzy. it is really entertaining and I wish them good luck with their ulcer.

 
 

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