The suggestion was mentioned in a chapter from a forthcoming book by reporters Michael Shear and Julie Hirschfeld Davis titled “Border Wars: Inside Trump’s Assault on Immigration,” which is to be published on October 8. The chapter was adapted from interviews with more than a dozen White House administration officials involved in the events that took place during the week of the meeting.
The officials told the Times that Trump suggested to advisers during an Oval Office meeting that they should shoot migrants in the legs to slow them down in response to violence, like throwing rocks, yet his aides told him it was illegal. Interviewed officials also said Trump mulled fortifying the border wall with a water-filled trench stocked with snakes or alligators.
Trump had earlier in November said "I hope not" when asked whether the US military might open fire on migrants headed to the US-Mexico border.
"I hope there won't be that, but I will tell you this – anybody throwing rocks... we will consider that a firearm, because there's not much difference," he told reporters at the time.
The meeting was set for 30 minutes, but the Times reported that it lasted more than an hour. Officials in the room included then-Homeland Security Secretary Kirstjen Nielsen, Secretary of State Mike Pompeo, acting Customs and Border Protection chief Kevin McAleenan, acting chief of staff Mick Mulvaney, and White House adviser Stephen Miller, according to the Times. So far, none of the officials have confirmed that they had attended the talk and what exactly was said.