The anonymous White House official whose explosive New York Times op-ed was turned into a best-selling book about the inner workings of the Trump administration pledged Tuesday to reveal their identity before next year’s general election.
“As far as anonymity is concerned, I will not keep my identity shrouded in secrecy forever,” the anonymous author wrote in a Reddit AMA. “I am not afraid to use my own name to express concern about the current occupant of the Oval Office. Donald Trump has not heard the last of me. There is more to come.”
The author went on to insist that “Trump will hear from me, in my own name, before the 2020 election.” And added that they may not be alone. “Other people who are currently serving, and who have left, are also considering adding their voices before votes are cast in 2020,” they wrote.
A Reddit moderator clarified that they were not able to confirm that the person doing the AMA is the same person who wrote the book and the Times op-ed, “but the publishers of his book assure us it’s the same guy and we have no reason not to believe them.” The publisher, Twelve Books, confirmed in a tweet that the AMA was conducted by the book’s author. In a further confirmation that it’s the same person, the anonymous author used the word “lodestar” in the AMA, just as he did in the Times op-ed.
That op-ed was published more than a year ago, on September 5, 2018, and the identity of the author doesn’t seem much clearer now than it did then. The New Republic’s David Kusnet guessed this week that the author is Guy Snodgrass, a former speechwriter for former Defense Secretary Jim Mattis. Snodgrass didn’t deny the suggestion in a Fox News interview this week.
On Reddit, the author defended their choice to remain anonymous. “Trump thrives on distractions, and anonymity is a way to deprive him of his favorite weapon of mass distraction — personal attacks — and force the discussion to center on the substance, his character,” they wrote.
Despite tens of thousands of preorders before it was even available, A Warning has failed to make much of a splash since its release. That may be because it doesn’t appear to reveal much new information. CNN’s rundown of “eye-popping insider details” contained in the book includes claims that seem familiar:
Still, there are a handful of eye-opening claims, among them that members of Trump’s team considered sabotaging him to prompt his resignation, that some in the President’s inner circle worried he was in the pocket of Russian President Vladimir Putin, and that many administration officials kept letters of resignation in their desks or on their laptops.
If this is the best “Anonymous” has, then it’s little surprise they’re teasing an unmasking. That’s the only way this person is going to keep getting attention.