Former Director of Nationwide Intelligence James Clapper and former CIA Director John Brennan reply to President Trump, who referred to as them “political hacks” and stated their evaluation that Russia influenced the 2016 election is mistaken.
“I imagine that [Putin] feels that he and Russia didn’t meddle within the election,” Trump stated. The president additionally stated he stands with the intelligence neighborhood “as it’s presently constituted.”
“He was referring to us as political hacks as a result of he was making an attempt to delegitimize the intelligence neighborhood evaluation that was achieved,” Brennan stated. “Jim Clapper, Jim Comey and John Brennan didn’t write that evaluation. It was written by the skilled intelligence officers and legislation enforcement officers of this nice nation.
“Secondly, I really feel very honored to be related to Jim Clapper and Jim Comey in the identical class. And contemplating the supply of the criticism, I contemplate that criticism a badge of honor,” he added.
And it is nonetheless puzzling as to why Mr. Trump doesn’t acknowledge that and embrace it, and in addition push again exhausting towards Mr. Putin.
The Russian menace to our democracy and our democratic foundations is actual. And I feel his persevering with to not say very clearly and strongly that this can be a nationwide safety downside, and to say to Mr. Putin, we all know you probably did it, you would need to cease it, as a result of there are going to be penalties when you do not.
TAPPER: And he — as soon as once more, he stated what he stated initially, and giving the impression to lots of people that he sided with Putin, and he began attacking the U.S. intelligence companies, you two particularly.
After which, when given a chance to make clear, to say the place do you — what do you imagine, he did not actually make clear. He stated — he did not say: I imagine Russia interfered within the 2016 election and I feel they should cease and I take it very severely. He stated: Putin believes what he believes, and I facet with our intelligence companies.
But it surely was obscure. Why do you assume he does that?
JAMES CLAPPER, FORMER U.S. NATIONAL INTELLIGENCE DIRECTOR: I do not know why the paradox about this, as a result of the menace posed by Russia, as John simply stated, is manifest and apparent, and has been for a very long time.
Putin is dedicated to undermining our system, our democracy, and our entire course of. And to attempt to paint it in some other — some other means is, I feel, astounding and, in actual fact, poses a peril to this nation.
TAPPER: What menace, what peril does it pose to the nation?
CLAPPER: Effectively, for one, that, as we have now seen, and the proof that is come out for the reason that publication of our intelligence neighborhood evaluation on the sixth of January, is — additional reinforces the depth and magnitude and scope and the aggressiveness of the Russian interference, to incorporate their very astute use of social media.
Aside from that, one thing we do not take into consideration an excessive amount of, is the truth that the Russians are launched into a really aggressive modernization of their strategic nuclear forces, to incorporate a really succesful and scary counterintelligence — counter house program.
They solely had one adversary in thoughts once they do that. And, oh, by the way in which, the Russians are in abject violation of the INF Treaty, the Intermediate Nuclear Forces Treaty. So, the Russians don’t harbor good intentions towards america, and there should not be any illusions or any ambiguity about that.
And our president — the president fosters that ambiguity.
TAPPER: The president additionally referred to as each of and also you FBI Director Comey political hacks. All three of you labored in senior ranges within the Obama administration, though you additionally labored throughout the Bush administration.
How do you reply to the cost?
BRENNAN: Effectively, to begin with, he was referring to us as political hacks as a result of he was making an attempt to delegitimize the intelligence neighborhood evaluation that was achieved.
Jim Clapper, Jim Comey and John Brennan didn’t write that evaluation. It was written by the skilled intelligence officers and legislation enforcement officers of this nice nation.
Secondly, I really feel very honored to be related to Jim Clapper and Jim Comey in the identical class. And contemplating the supply of the criticism, I contemplate that criticism a badge of honor.
And, third, I discovered it significantly reprehensible that, on Veterans Day, that Donald Trump would assault and impugn the integrity and the character of Jim Clapper, who served in uniform for 35 years, who responded to the decision of his nation to go to Vietnam, flew in over 70 fight help missions over Vietnam, and, like Senator McCain, actually did put his life in danger, due to this nation’s nationwide safety.
And to impugn the character of anyone like Jim Clapper on Veterans Day, who has devoted a lot of his life to this nation, I simply discover that outrageous, and it is one thing that I — I feel that Mr. Trump ought to be ashamed of, nevertheless it would not appear as if something he does, he feels any disgrace in anyway.
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