To believe Donald Trump, you must believe two largely contradictory things.
You must believe that there are a slew of leakers in the executive branch who are providing damning details to the press illegally, and who must be rooted out and punished. (See tweets here, here, here, here and here.)
You must also believe that the press makes up imaginary leakers simply to slowly and incrementally report false stories
.. On the campaign trail, he mastered the art of vague assurance that he stood for whatever his audience stood for, and, in office, that skill doesn’t seem to have faded. If it is best that people think a leak was made up by the media — like The Washington Post’s report that Jared Kushner asked Russia to help set up a secure communication system with the Trump team — then Trump will argue that the media made it up.
If the leak is incidental to him or if he’d like to put the heat on someone else — if, say, someone in law enforcement leaks photos of a terrorist attack in the U.K. — he’ll argue that the leakers need to be caught.
.. Couple those SAOs with Trump’s hundreds — literally — of untrue statements since he came into office and his tendency to have staff make claims that he later undercuts (something he himself admits), it seems pretty clear where the fake news originates, if Trump is to be believed.
Incidentally, for those curious about why Trump might think that someone would create a fictitious source to make a ridiculous claim, we return to the same well we’ve visited so many times before: His tweets.