Body language expert reveals what’s really going on with Donald Trump’s ‘fire and fury’ speech

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Donald Trump promised ‘fire and fury’ as the crisis in North Korea and Guam deepens further and further.

But as he did it, his body language gave away quite a lot, according to body language analyst and author Judi James.

She said that rather than being submissive, it suggests that things aren’t going his way, he’s not in the mood for negotiation and there’s an anger ‘bordering on fury’.

Here is Judi’s full analysis for metro.co.uk of what we witnessed with Trump’s body language, the way he delivered his statement, and the way the people around him reacted.

Trump’s chilling rhetoric and use of alliteration for emphasis does sound like a direct verbal lift from Truman but unlike that president, Trump delivers his brief speech leaking a whole host of body language endorsements to suggest a man who is both angry and at the end of his tether.

Overall he is the one emotional figure at the table.

The people around him, including his wife, use a masked body language state known as dog-facing, staring blankly ahead, making them look subdued and even shocked during this telling-off.
Trump says 'fire and fury' if any North Korean action

Trump’s self-hug arm-fold is not a posture you’d normally associate with a state of aggressive arousal though.

When humans and animals want to intimidate to avoid a fight they will often splay to make themselves look like the bigger opponent, puffing their chest and sticking out their chin.

This is a normal body language state for Trump though, who uses chest-puffing and other power gestures in his daily life. In sharp contrast he is self-diminishing here, wrapping his arms around his torso to make his body look smaller.

This could look like submission but it clearly isn’t. Trump adopts this state rarely and usually when things aren’t going his way.

When he’s on top – in control of a situation – his gesticulation is open and used for emphasis but here his hands are almost hidden.

As he speaks his whole torso shimmies and tilts from side to side for emphasis, making this pose look like firmness and a lack of desire to negotiate.

He’s containing his own normal body rituals but the signs of anger bordering on fury are there in the accelerated blink rate, the lower jaw-jut and the body bristling.

Apart from this non-verbal leakage he’s trying to throw everything into his words. For his parting shot: ‘Never – seen – before’ he injects a pause between each word for added emphasis like a parent telling off a child.

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