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Tue Jun 11, 2019, 05:28 PM

Conspiracy theories make CIA's job harder

By John Sipher
June 11 at 6:00 AM

... Trump issued a directive assigning Attorney General William P. Barr to probe the origins of the Russia investigation, giving Barr the authority to declassify secret intelligence ...

The order directly undercuts Director of National Intelligence Daniel Coats, who is responsible for both protecting and potentially releasing intelligence. And it suggests that Trump is still disputing the fact that Russia interfered in the 2016 election.

The president hardly needs to create a public furor to determine what the intelligence community knew about Russian interference, when they knew it or how they learned it. The CIA would gladly provide detailed briefings to him, the attorney general or anyone Trump might request one for. There are well-established means of sharing information within the executive branch ...

... As intelligence professionals engage Barr in reviewing the Russian intelligence, they also need to determine how public release of information will affect their efforts to recruit and protect sources, the trust of allied security services, adversaries, the public and the agenciesí own workforces.

Trumpís public comments disparaging his intelligence community have already made it harder to recruit and protect sources. Why risk your life to provide information to a U.S. president who doesnít understand the stakes, doesnít respect the work of his security professionals and may even disclose source information? ...

https://www.washingtonpost.com/outlook/2019/06/11/trumps-conspiracy-theories-about-intelligence-will-make-cias-job-harder/?utm_term=.0994789215cd

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