Don’t Get Your Hopes Up

Matthew G. Saroff
3 min readJun 2, 2023


I am referring, of course to allegations that Trump was caught on tape discussing non-imminent US plans to invade Iran.

Apparently, he was having a conversation with some ghost writers, probably for Mark Meadows.

Claiming that he had the document, where then Chairman of the JCS Mark Milly had given him a document of the plans to invade Iran.

Apparently, it was a massive affair involving huge numbers of troops.

It is reported that Trump bragged about how secret the documents were, and he may have waved the papers in front of his face.

Technically, even the existence of such a document is a serious state secret.

In reality, that there is an office in the Pentagon that plans, and routinely updates, plans to invade Iran, the DPRK, Venezuela, and the Duchy of Grand Fenwick is known.

If the description of the tape is real, it does show that Trump knew that he was handling classified documents, which goes to prove intent, but I still don’t think that it’s enough for the DoJ to invoke the Espionage Act.

Federal prosecutors have obtained an audio recording of a summer 2021 meeting in which former President Donald Trump acknowledges he held onto a classified Pentagon document about a potential attack on Iran, multiple sources told CNN, undercutting his argument that he declassified everything.

The recording indicates Trump understood he retained classified material after leaving the White House, according to multiple sources familiar with the investigation. On the recording, Trump’s comments suggest he would like to share the information but he’s aware of limitations on his ability post-presidency to declassify records, two of the sources said.

CNN has not listened to the recording, but multiple sources described it. One source said the relevant portion on the Iran document is about two minutes long, and another source said the discussion is a small part of a much longer meeting.


Prosecutors have asked witnesses about the recording and the document before a federal grand jury. The episode has generated enough interest for investigators to have questioned Gen. Mark Milley, one of the highest-ranking Trump-era national security officials, about the incident.

The July 2021 meeting was held at Trump’s golf club in Bedminster, New Jersey, with two people working on the autobiography of Trump’s former chief of staff Mark Meadows as well as aides employed by the former president, including communications specialist Margo Martin. The attendees, sources said, did not have security clearances that would allow them access to classified information. Meadows didn’t attend the meeting, sources said.

If this happened at Bedminster, I would suggest that they pick up the phone and talk to Niitek in Dulles, Virginia.

They have some remarkably advanced ground penetrating radars. Just the thing to scan Ivana Trump’s grave. (Also, who the f%$# buries their ex wife on a golf course unless the coffin includes incriminating evidence)

Meadows’ autobiography includes an account of what appears to be the same meeting, during which Trump “recalls a four-page report typed up by (Trump’s former chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff) Mark Milley himself. It contained the general’s own plan to attack Iran, deploying massive numbers of troops, something he urged President Trump to do more than once during his presidency.”

The document Trump references was not produced by Milley, CNN was told.

I get it. If Trump were just some schmoe, he’d already be sitting in a SuperMax cell awaiting trial.

But we are dealing with a DoJ, and an administration, who are obsessed with a return to normalcy and the, “Norms,” so I do not expect to see him in the dock for the foreseeable future.

I would be delighted to be wrong, but I think that the powers that be are too invested in the precedent of Gerald Ford pardoning Richard Nixon to allow this to happen.