Former senior intelligence officials signed a letter standing in solidarity with former CIA director John Brennan after President Donald Trump revoked his security clearance.
"We feel compelled to respond in the wake of the ill-considered and unprecedented remarks and actions by the White House," the letter said. "We know John to be an enormously talented, capable and patriotic individual who devoted his entire adult life to the service of this nation."
Ex-CIA officer Phil Mudd signed the letter and told CNN's Jim Acosta exactly why.
"It's pretty simple. Yesterday you saw the former faces of the intelligence community, people who did congressional testimony, people who might have appeared in clips on CNN. Today you see the people behind them," Mudd said.
He continued: "My peers, the people of my generation and there's one simple reason dozens of us signed up. They are Republicans, Democrats, people across the CIA signed on to this letter that just came out. In my career, we looked at adversaries an potential adversary such as China and Russia."
"One of the characteristics of those adversaries or potential adversaries was people like Vladimir Putin, who tried to prevent their opponents from speaking and they used legal and illegal means to do so," he said.
He added, "The president can call us dogs, but he will never muzzle us. The thing we served for, one of them was the right to speak in a democratic society. I don't care about security clearances. This is not about security clearances, this is about people being told they cannot speak in a democratic society where we have the freedom to speak."
Watch the video below via CNN.