Two former senior intelligence officials have spoken out over the manipulation of US President Donald Trump by Russian President Vladimir Putin after Trump come out in support of Putin, saying that he believed him when Putin asserted that he had not meddled in the presidential election last year.
Former CIA Director, John Brennan, and former Director of National Intelligence, James Clapper, have attacked the president for his mishandling of the Moscow situation, even while there is a special investigation going on. “I think Mr. Trump is, for whatever reason, either intimidated by Mr. Putin, afraid of what he could do, or what might come out as a result of these investigations… It’s either naivete, ignorance or fear in terms of what Mr. Trump is doing vis-a-vis the Russians” said Mr. Brennan who was appearing alongside Clapper on CNN program “State of the Union”. Clapper also inferred that foreign leaders who rolled out the red carpet to Trump could control him.
Trump is no stranger to being insulted, especially over his potential ties to Moscow. But the insults are going to seem a lot stronger from two men who have held such high positions in the intelligence community. But at least he has Treasury Secretary Steve Mnuchin to protect him as on the same show as Clapper and Brennan, he asserted “President Trump is not getting played by anybody”.
In a swift rebuttal, Trump called the two intelligence experts “political hacks” and questioned the results of an intelligence report that concluded that the Russians had at least tried to tilt the election in Trump’s favor. Considering the potential downsides for Trump, it is hardly surprising that he calls into question yet another piece that links him to at least benefiting from state-sponsored meddling in the 2016 presidential election.
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