"A bracing read. Rothkopf still has all the anger a good chronicler of the Trump Administration requires....An important roadmap through the massive evidence of collaboration between the Trump campaign and the Russian secret services...A brisk history of the many other Americans rightly or wrongly accused of treason, from Benedict Arnold and Aaron Burr to Robert E. Lee and Alger Hiss." The Guardian
"This is a great book for someone who is interested in learning how Trump relates to others in the country’s history and, though he is perhaps one of the worst, he certainly won’t be the last." Eugene Weekly
"David Rothkopf, one of America's leading public intellectuals, has again delivered a tour de force of provocative argumentation. He ranges widely over U.S. history to make the case that, even if he is never convicted of a crime, Donald Trump deserves to be grouped with those few American leaders who have betrayed America. Agree or disagree, you cannot ignore the case he marshals with such consummate skill." Max Boot, Washington Post columnist, CNN global affairs analyst, and author of The Corrosion of Conservatism: Why I Left the Right
"Anyone interested in the preservation of the United States from those who would betray it from within must read David Rothkopf’s compelling history of treasonous acts – as well as acts deemed treasonous at the time but later understood as heroic...Rothkopf saves his harshest condemnation for Donald Trump and the deep currents of which Rothkopf sees Trump’s rise as but a symptom. Especially valuable for its implicit questioning of the Constitution’s deliberately narrow definition of “treason” in this new age of cyberwar and domestic terrorism, Rothkopf’s journey through the dark corridors of betrayal is, despite its grim subject matter, a delight to read." Laurence H. Tribe, Carl M. Loeb University Professor, Harvard Law School of Harvard University and author of To End A Presidency: The Power of Impeachment
"In this scathing history, Deep State Radio host Rothkopf contends that Donald Trump belongs 'among the many Americans in our history who have for money or ambition, misjudgement or spite, turned their backs on our flag and people.' ...Rothkopf's well-informed study draws interesting parallels between the past and the present." Publishers Weekly
"With elegantly controlled fury, David Rothkopf arraigns the 45th president of disloyalty to the United States and its people. A scorching accusation that summons American history as evidence for the prosecution."
David Frum, author Trumpocalypse, Restoring American Democracy
"Throughout our more than two-century history, America has experienced its share of traitors. But as David Rothkopf’s eloquent and powerful book asserts, we’ve never had an individual who has betrayed the country as consistently, as resolutely, as completely as Donald Trump. Traitor traces the stories of many of those who have put self-interest above the public interest, from Benedict Arnold to Richard Nixon. But Rothkopf puts Trump where he belongs: in a class by himself. If you ever have any doubt that Trump has betrayed the country on a scale that beggars comparison, Traitor will remove it. "
Richard Stengel, former U.S. Under Secretary of State, former Editor, Time Magazine, MSNBC Contributor.
"In Traitor: A History of American Betrayal from Benedict Arnold to Donald Trump, David Rothkopf puts the presidency of Donald Trump into the historical context of other Americans who have been unfaithful to their country. Rothkopf describes in vivid detail some of the famous traitors in U.S. history, such as Jefferson Davis, John Wilkes Booth, Tokyo Rose, Aldrich Ames, Edward Snowden, and others. His readable and compelling narrative brings their stories to life. Rothkopf makes the case that the collective harm inflicted by Trump outdoes them all. For the president who claims to put “America First,” Trump’s self-serving conduct would make even Aaron Burr hide his head in shame."
Barbara McQuade, former U.S. Attorney for the Eastern District of Michigan, professor of Law at the University of Michigan and legal analyst for NBC and MSNBC
"Americans have gotten too used to calling each other traitors. David Rothkopf tours the history of American traitors to remind us that the word once had real meaning - and that it applies to Donald Trump as much as any of them."
Tom Nichols, author of The Death of Expertise
Rothkopf ranges across American history for confirming examples that hold Donald Trump guilty of treason.
In his new book, On Treason, Carlton F.W. Larson, a California law professor, discusses how the crime of treason is bound up in such specific technicalities that it is almost never prosecuted as such. Rothkopf takes a less confining view here, holding that Trump “has repeatedly, indisputably, and egregiously betrayed his country.” He has done this through many acts of commission, though the author hits hardest on the Mueller Report’s assertions of actions that favored other countries—especially Russia—over the one Trump ostensibly leads. A president who is a traitor is a highly unusual situation. But as Rothkopf observes, there have been many other Americans who, motivated by money or ideology, have aided the nation’s enemies. The most notorious of them is Benedict Arnold, whose very name is a byword for treason and who attempted to trade away military secrets that might have led to the failure of the American revolutionary cause. Aaron Burr appealed to the British for help in trying to realize his ambitions to power, though they were lukewarm to the idea, and, writes the author, “there is no evidence they sought to break up the United States.” John Brown was executed for treason against the state of Virginia, though the charge would not be entertained today. And so forth, on down to the Rosenbergs—who, unfortunately for them, fell afoul of Roy Cohn, later to become Trump’s mentor and “often cited as precisely the kind of lawyer Trump was looking for when he appointed William Barr to be U.S. attorney general, a position Trump saw as primarily existing to protect him from his accusers.” There are many questions that lawyers need to ask Trump that concern his disdain for American institutions and fondness for foreign dictators, but Rothkopf’s conclusions are open-ended.
The argument doesn’t cinch the charge, but the book makes for a useful summation of ceaseless and blatant malfeasance.