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Steve Bannon opened up in a rare interview and nobody can figure out what he was thinking AP Photo/Andrew Harnik
President Donald Trump's White House Senior Adviser Steve Bannon arrives before a news conference between President Donald Trump and Italian Prime Minister Paolo Gentiloni in the East Room of the White House in Washington, Thursday, April 20, 2017. (AP Photo/Andrew Harnik)

Steve Bannon, formerly of the right-wing website Breitbart, was deemed a “shadow president” when he first entered Trump’s White House as chief strategist. Attacks on the president’s trusted right-hand man have intensified in recent weeks. In an interview on Wednesday, Bannon didn’t hesitate to speak his mind on several current events.

Bannon called Robert Kuttner, a co-founder of The American Prospect, and made a handful of interesting remarks:

  • Bannon stated “There’s no military solution [to North Korea’s nuclear threats], forget it. Until somebody solves the part of the equation that shows me that ten million people in Seoul don’t die in the first 30 minutes, I don’t know what you’re talking about.”
  • He remarked “the economic war with China is everything. And we have to be maniacally focused on that.”
  • He declared that his internal adversaries who want to cooperate with China in hopes of getting Beijing to help with North Korea are “wetting themselves.” He continued “I’m changing out people at East Asian defense; I’m getting hawks in.” He also said that internal fights “are a fight [he fights] every day here.”
  • On the white nationalism movement, Bannon remarked “it’s losers. It’s a fringe element. I think the media plays it up too much.”

Kuttner noted that Bannon never asked for the call to be off-the-record (when talking to a reporter, the default setting is generally on-the-record). Kuttner also pointed out “Steve Bannon is not exactly Bambi when it comes to dealing with the press. He’s probably the most media-savvy person in America.”

The interview, which temporarily crashed The American Prospect, has now lead to further criticism of Bannon. Attacks on Bannon continued on Thursday morning, shading his already questionable security in the White House. “Drudge Report,” another right-wing media site that has led an attack on Bannon ran the headline “total eclipse of Steve Bannon.”

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Bannon reportedly “told friends that he did not believe his conversation was on-the-record interview,” the New York Times reports. However, the former media leader did manage to spin the interview with the Daily Mail, telling the website that his remarks “drew fire away from POTUS” and that he “successfully changed the [media] narrative.”

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Jonathan Swan of Axios, who has reported extensively on Bannon remarked on Wednesday night “you might read some takes tomorrow saying Bannon is playing 5D chess & this was part of a devious strategy. Those takes will be wrong.”

Alex Thomas About the author:
Alex is from Delaware. He lives in DC.
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