Can Donald Trump keep a secret? No. He invited Russian spies aka ambassadors into the Oval Office when he first took office in 2017. Then, he spilled the beans about important Israeli intelligence. So, is the ex-president’s ability to keep a secret a genuine concern? If not, what is it?
People who reported to him were advised on how to present their daily intelligence briefs to him. No page-long sets of information, no paragraphs, no phrases. Keep it to one or two words. How would that work?
‘Putin Oil, Kim Bomb, Boris Virus, Merkel Secret Headquarters.’
There would be a problem with this report. Trump did not like multisyllabic words. Okay, make that “Merkel Secret HQ” or even better, ‘Merkel Secret.” If an intelligence office really wanted to get his message across, he just might say “Secret.”
Now, Trump does not like strong women, he might tune out during his daily briefings, but what is a person going to do?
Right now, the White House has been considering whether Trump should continue with his intelligence briefings now that he is no longer president. Other presidents have done so, but Trump is a special case. The guy owes a billion dollars in debt, according to The Forbes magazine, and he is desperate for cash.
During a White House briefing, Press Secretary Jen Psaski said President Joe Biden’s national security team was considering what to do:
‘It’s something that is under review.’
Both Democrats and even former members of the Trump White House have warned against him having access to national security secrets. After all, the woebegone former president cannot keep a national security secret — at all.
House Intelligence Committee Chair Adam Schiff told CBS’ Face The Nation, The Politico reported:
‘There’s no circumstance in which this president should get another intelligence briefing, not now, not in the future. I don’t think he can be trusted with it now and in the future, he certainly can’t be trusted.’
On The Washington Post Opinion page, Principal Deputy Director of National Intelligence Sue Gordon said that Trump was “unusually vulnerable to bad actors with ill intent.” On The Washington Post Opinion page, she wrote:
‘My recommendation, as a 30-plus-year veteran of the intelligence community, is not to provide him any briefings after Jan. 20. With this simple act — which is solely the new president’s prerogative — Joe Biden can mitigate one aspect of the potential national security risk posed by Donald Trump, private citizen.’
Then, Gordon added:
‘I do not make this recommendation casually. It is based on my deep understanding of threats to national security, on decades protecting our people and interests overseas, and my experience deploying technical means to counter our adversaries.’
The former intelligence woman said her decision was “not a personal grievance:”
‘I also have personal experience with the president: I briefed him many times, participated in scores of meetings with him as his principal deputy director for national intelligence. While I resigned my position in 2019, this is not a personal grievance. As an intelligence professional, I have gone out of my way not to judge his policy or personal actions publicly. This is an intelligence assessment born of my years of experience.’
The Mueller Report Adventures: In Bite-Sizes on this Facebook page. These quick, two-minute reads interpret the report in normal English for busy people. Mueller Bite-Sizes uncovers what is essentially a compelling spy mystery. Interestingly enough, Mueller Bite-Sizes can be read in any order.