Former FBI director James Comey seemed to throw shade at Donald Trump after the president's attack on CNN over the weekend and the internet went nuts. Trump slammed CNN and its international arm in a tweet on Saturday (25 November) and accused the network of representing America "poorly" around the world.

"@FoxNews is MUCH more important in the United States than CNN, but outside of the US, CNN International is still a major source of (Fake) news, and they represent our Nation to the WORLD very poorly. The outside world does not see the truth from them!" Trump tweeted.

Trump has frequently criticised mainstream media outlets and often referred to them as the "fake news media".

However, his latest attack immediately drew fierce criticism, particularly from CNN reporters, analysts and other journalists for taking aim at the freedom of the press and undermining the work of foreign correspondents in war zones across the globe.

Within minutes, CNN's public relations department responded to Trump's tweet saying: "It's not CNN's job to represent the US to the world. That's yours. Our job is to report the news."

Meanwhile, Comey, who was fired by Trump in May, took to social media to post a seemingly simple quote on the freedom of the press that many took as a subtweet to Trump's latest remarks.

About half an hour after Trump's tweet attacking CNN, Comey posted a quote from Thomas Jefferson's 28 January, 1786 letter to physician James Currie.

"Our liberty depends on the freedom of the press, and that cannot be limited without being lost," Comey tweeted along with a picture of the Capitol Building.

Twitter swiftly praised Comey for once again taking on the president with a philosophical quote. Comey's tweet has already garnered over 31,000 retweets and 79,000 likes and counting.

"Comey brings the shade with such eloquence," one person wrote. Another said: "Your shade is so perfect, so succint. It would kill the orange dummy residing in OUR WH, if only he understood big words with more than one syllable."

"Pretty sure @Comey is my favourite Twitter shade-thrower & clap backer, ever," one Twitter user wrote.

"Thank goodness for heroes and champions of truth and wisdom like you, Mr Comey!" another tweeted.

james comey
Former FBI director James Comey appeared to throw shade at US President Donald Trump with another philosophical tweet and Twitter loved it BRENDAN SMIALOWSKI/AFP/Getty Images