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August 02, 2018

Lee Smith: Intelligence Professionals Quietly Agree With Trump About Taking Away Clapper's and Brennan's Security Clearances

Lee Smith has IC sources. They seem to trust him. He doesn't out their names.

So if anyone on a website is an IC professional, they can pass their news to Lee Smith.

Anyway: Another good report from Smith.

President Trump has been criticized for politicizing the intelligence community by threatening to strip the security clearances of former top officials including John Brennan and James Clapper. But numerous past and present senior intelligence officials say that the Obama administration started the politicization -- and that revoking the clearances of those who abuse the privilege for partisan purposes may help right the ship.

"As is often the case with the Trump administration, the rollout of the policy is bad, but the idea driving the policy is sound," said one senior intelligence official who, like others interviewed for this article, spoke to RealClearInvestigations only on condition of anonymity. "Under some Obama-era intelligence chiefs, intelligence was used as a political weapon. We need to root that out, not reward it."

...

Some sources say former CIA director Brennan, ex-director of national intelligence Clapper and others with security clearances were emboldened to pursue political agendas through the anti-Trump media, in a climate of impunity created by the Justice Department's failure to prosecute leaks attending Donald Trump's election. Notable among the leaks, they said, was a top unnamed official's "unmasking" of Trump national security adviser Michael Flynn in a January 2017 Washington Post column by David Ignatius, sourced to classified intercepts of Flynn's contacts with the Russian ambassador. Leaking such classified information is a felony.

"The very people who are now talking the most know the details of how the Flynn intercept was leaked," a senior U.S. official told RealClearInvestigations. "They wouldn't be out talking like that if they'd been interviewed by the FBI." The Department of Justice declined to comment.

In February, Attorney General Jeff Sessions said the Justice Department is "aggressively: investigating the Flynn leak as one of 27 open investigations into unauthorized disclosures of classified intelligence. But to date none of those have brought indictments.


...

Revoking security clearances would curtail the ex-officials' ability to use for partisan ends the resources and institutions of the federal government, including classified intelligence. Published reports show that Obama-era intelligence officials embarked on this course even while they were in government.

...

According to the House Intelligence Committee’s March 2018 Russia report, Clapper also gave inconsistent testimony about his contacts with the press, including his future employer CNN, regarding the Clinton campaign-funded dossier alleging Trump's ties to Russian officials. Clapper at first denied discussing it with the media and then admitted that he had.

...

Another concern is that the emerging relationship between the press and the intelligence community may inspire active intelligence officers to leak to preferred news organizations with an eye to a job after retirement. "The situation," says the official, "is ripe for abuse."

Read the whole thing. Lee Smith quotes an intelligence pro noting that the Flynn unmasking leak could only have come from a few people -- he mentions three who would have that information to leak.

Can you guess who those three might be?


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posted by Ace of Spades at 06:37 PM

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