Accessibility links

Breaking News

Trump Takes on Putin Critics, Kim on Twitter

U.S. President Donald Trump and Russia's President Vladimir Putin talk during the photo session at the APEC Summit in Danang, Vietnam, Nov. 11, 2017.

After more than a week of carefully crafted messages about his trip to Asia, U.S. President Donald Trump has again launched a tweet storm aimed at his critics at home and abroad.

In the span of three quick tweets from Vietnam early Sunday, Trump defended his meeting with Russian President Putin and hit back at North Korean leader Kim Jong Un.

During the flight to Hanoi late Saturday, the president said Putin had again denied to him allegations of Russian meddling in the 2016 U.S. Presidential election. He added that he believed the matter was set up by Democrats.

Those comments drew sharp criticism in Washington, where Rep. Adam Schiff (D-Calif.), the ranking member of the House Permanent Select Committee on Intelligence, said the president understands the truth about Russian interference, and is simply choosing to accept Putin’s denials “over the solid evidence of our own intelligence agencies.”

In a statement, Sen. John McCain (R-Ariz.), a frequent critic of the president from his own party, said, “There’s nothing ‘America First’ about taking the word of a KGB colonel over that of the American intelligence community. … Vladimir Putin does not have America’s interests at heart. To believe otherwise is not only naive but also places our national security at risk.”

In the first of three successive tweets Sunday morning, Trump hit back at his critics.

Trump also tweeted about what he said were the failures of the previous administration to improve relations with Russia.

He also turned his attention to North Korean leader Kim Jong Un, who had again called him a dotard, a term that describes an elderly person who is losing his mental abilities.

On Twitter, Trump, who has called Kim “Little rocket man,” said: