Trump revokes security clearance from ex-CIA director

Pauline Gross
August 16, 2018

Sanders also cited unrelated transgressions involving Brennan, stretching back to 2014.

"I am concerned that if security clearances are now going to become a political tool in the hands of individuals such as Mr. Trump, that, I think, will send a very, very chilling message to individuals in the government [and] maybe former officials who still hold their clearances, as well as the future generation of intelligence and national security professionals", Brennan said.

"The president is exploring the mechanisms to remove security clearance because they've politicized and, in some cases, monetized their public service and security clearances", she said at the time.

Now former Central Intelligence Agency directors and other national security officials are allowed to keep their clearances for a period of time so they can advise their successors.

Now, the White House has indicated other Trump critics may soon face similar action.

Brennan responded on Twitter, saying the clearance removal "is part of a broader effort by Mr. Trump to suppress freedom of speech & punish critics".

Trump's comments are reminiscent of when he claimed he was firing Comey over mishandling the Clinton probe, then admitted in a TV interview days later that he was thinking "this Russian Federation thing with Trump and Russian Federation is a made-up story". I think he finally gave Brennan the hook for no better reason than that Brennan shot his mouth off about how bad Trump is one too many times and POTUS chose to pull the trigger. "I call it the rigged witch hunt, [it] is a sham".

Just a day before, Mr. Brennan strongly criticised Mr. Trump for using derogatory words against former White House aide Omarosa Manigault Newman.

James Clapper, the former director of national intelligence.

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This is a scathing retort less than 24 hours after the White House announced that President Donald Trump had ordered the revocation of Brennan's security clearances, a move that many saw as a symbolic threat created to silence critics of this administration. "Won't have any effect on what I say or write".

What needs to be borne in mind in all this is, as former FBI Director James Comey himself has admitted: "I was making decisions in an environment where Hillary Clinton was sure to be the next president".

He published a book this year called "The Assault on Intelligence: American National Security in an Age of Lies". Comey does not have a security clearance; Trump said Comey may not be able to have it reinstated.

Hayden told CNN viewers on Wednesday that Trump's decision to revoke Brennan's clearance was "threatening to the rest of us" and amounted to an attempt to silence dissent. "Leaders behave like this in dictatorships, not democracies".

She also said the move is not politically motivated and is warranted by the president's constitutional authority to protect national intelligence.

And California Rep. Adam Schiff, the ranking Democrat on the House intelligence committee, tweeted, "An enemies list is ugly, undemocratic and un-American".

Several Republicans also weighed in, with Sen.

House Speaker Paul Ryan, R-Wis., had previously dismissed Trump's threat as nothing more than presidential "trolling".

Other reports by GizPress

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