​'This was a national security emergency': Woodward says Trump's post-election meltdown nearly led to 'catastrophe'
President Donald Trump. (AFP Photo/MANDEL NGAN)

Legendary reporter Bob Woodward told CNN's Jake Tapper on Tuesday that America was in grave peril while suffering through former President Donald Trump's meltdown over losing the 2020 presidential election.

Woodward, who has just published a new book called Peril with fellow Washington Post reporter Robert Costa, relayed the extraordinary lengths that national security officials went to keep Trump from potentially dragging the United States into a war in a desperate bid to keep power.

"Here we have the Speaker of the House and the senior military leader, General Milley, concluding that they believe he's crazy," said Woodward. "The issue... is not some abstract problem. It's do we have control of nuclear weapons? And if there's a catastrophe that could befall the United States or the world, it would be the use of nuclear weapons."

He then broke down how Milley worked to ensure Trump could not unilaterally launch a nuclear war against China as part of a last-ditch effort to remain president.

"This was a national security emergency, not just about control of nuclear weapons, but about whether there might be a war with China," said Woodward, who said Trump's unstable emotional state could have resulted in "another catastrophe."

Watch the video below.

Woodward says Trump's post-election meltdown nearly led to 'catastrophe' www.youtube.com