Federal intelligence agencies are not telling President Trump everything about threats facing the nation because they’re afraid sensitive government information could be leaked, the Wall Street Journal concluded after interviewing numerous current and former officials.
The Trump administration wasted no time in responding to the report. “There is nothing that leads us to believe that this is an accurate account of what is actually happening,” a White House spokesman said.
The Daily Mail noted that federal employees already were under fire for allegedly leaking details of phone calls between former National Security Director Michael Flynn and the Russian ambassador to the United States. The conversations took place in December, when Barack Obama was still in the White House. Trump asked for the director’s resignation earlier this week, amid charges that Flynn and the envoy had discussed lifting U.S. sanctions against Russia when the new administration took office. Flynn lied to Vice President Mike Pence and other officials about his Russian connections, according to multiple reports.
Trump, trying to deflect attention from his disgraced security chief, blamed government whistleblowers who he said “illegally leaked” the Flynn story. The president also ripped the news media, calling it a “really a sad thing that (Flynn) was treated so badly.”
Even before the Flynn affair, there were questions about the administration’s links to Russia. The country’s leader, Vladimir Putin, has frequently exchanged compliments with Trump. More than once as a presidential candidate, Trump called Putin a “stronger leader” than President Obama. Trump’s former campaign manager Paul Manafort was forced to resign in August, when it became known that he had worked as a political consultant for a Ukrainian leader who was allied with Putin.
On Tuesday, The New York Times reported that an unspecified number of Trump campaign operatives had phone conversations with Russian intelligence officials during last year’s White House race. However, U.S. intelligence agencies stressed that they were unaware of any coordination between Trump’s staff and the Russians to hack Democratic Party officials’ emails.