In comments that signal a shift away from his talk earlier this week over the United States resuming the use of torture on detainees, President Trump today confirmed in comments during a joint conference with British Prime Minister Theresa May, saying he is leaving the torture question up to Defense Secretary James Mattis.
White House spokesman Sean Spicer said Trump also meant to sign actions related to military readiness and the National Security Council.
Commenting on relations with Russia, Trump said it is too early to determine if Washington would lift its economic penalties related to Moscow's violations of Ukraine's sovereignty, but he said he is "all for" better ties U.S.
"I don't necessarily agree, but I would tell you that he would override because I am giving him that power", Trump said Friday during a joint news conference with British Prime Minister Theresa May.
Still, in a significant moment, Trump proclaimed during the news conference that he believes torture "does work". "But I am going with our leaders", Trump said.
He also said the U.S military had been tested after a decade of war, "our longest war", in Afghanistan.
The first executive order would "begin a great rebuilding of the armed services of the United States", Trump said.
The order also calls for reviews of the Defense Department's nuclear arsenal and ballistic missile defense.
Trump has repeatedly called for a more forceful strategy to take on ISIS in Iraq and Syria that would include "bombing the shit" out of the terrorist group.
Trump campaigned on a pledge to put in place "extreme vetting" procedures particularly for people coming to the US from countries with terrorism ties.
Once he turned to the substance of the question, Trump said he would let Mattis make the decision about the sort of interrogation techniques used by the United States. President Barack Obama had set the refugee limit for this budget year at 110,000.