On Monday, former CIA officer Bob Baer told CNN’s Erin Burnett that he had never heard of a situation before like the new reports that intelligence officials concealed information from President Donald Trump about efforts to plant malware in the Russian power grid.
“It is pretty stunning, the reporting here that they didn’t tell him everything that they were doing because they were worried that he would tell the Russians themselves or make them stop doing it,” said Burnett. “Could you imagine a scenario like this?”
“Never,” said Baer. “In all my years in intelligence and around it and studying it and the rest, I have never heard of an operation intentionally kept away from the president. It just doesn’t happen, ever. I know of no circumstances, and I’m talking 50, 60 years, that this has ever occurred.”
“When I was in the CIA, we had a channel when we thought something was particularly sensitive that involved the security of the United States we could send it right to the White House,” Baer added. “It went to the Situation Room and landed on the president’s desk by law. So for the Pentagon or Cyber Command or whoever kept this away from the president is stunning. Truly, it is.”
“What does it tell you that they would make such a move?” Burnett pressed him. “That they would keep President Trump intentionally in the dark about details of what they were doing, aggressively, against Russia?”
“Erin, they don’t trust him,” said Baer. “He goes to Mar-a-Lago, talks about operations. He invites the Russian ambassador into the Oval Office, talks about compartmented operations. And on and on and on. If you if have anything to do with Russia in the government whether the FBI or Pentagon, it’s self-defensive to keep it out of the president’s hands.”
“I’m remembering back to remember the sensitive operation in Syria and he shared information with the Russian foreign minister, which apparently Israel was worried could have put commando lives at risk,” said Burnett. “If he knew the details and overruled the intelligence community or shared these details in any way with a foreign official, how bad would that be?”
“It’s terrible,” said Baer. “These things are top secret. The hacking codes are supposed to be clandestine. Now that the Russians know that there’s malware in their power grids, they can find it. It’s going to set back the national security agency, the Pentagon and everybody else. These steps are well tightly held, only to be shared in the White House with the president, and national security adviser. And now we know. But what really disturbs me is not trusting the president. I have never seen that before. I wonder what is going on inside the government.”
Black Pennsylvania Trump voter wonders if he’s still welcome in the GOP
Tuesday, CNN released interviews with Texas Trump supporters who defended his racist attacks on four Congresswomen of color. Wednesday night, Van Jones showed his panel of supporters of both President Donald Trump and former President Barack Obama. But things got tense when a Black Trump supporter was asked about the president's racially charged statements.
Two men, one white one Black, in the group said they supported Trump and probably would again because business was good. Two women in the group lamented that Trump's racism was hurtful for the country.
"I just go back to values," the older women said. "I value treating people with dignity. And if there is anything that is incongruent with those values, then I'm not for that. So I'm not going to put profit over my values."
Don Lemon lists ‘manipulative garbage’ Trump uses to exploit his supporters’ ignorance
CNN host Don Lemon thinks that President Donald Trump is using issues like race to manipulate his voters into voting against their own interest.
In his opening commentary, Lemon showed the clip of Trump's supporters chanting "send her back" at Rep. Ilhan Omar (D-MN), who is a Somali immigrant who came to the U.S. when she was just 12 years old.
He then cited a tweet that Trump sent out earlier Wednesday.
"New Poll: The Rasmussen Poll, one of the most accurate in predicting the 2016 Election, has just announced that "Trump" numbers have recently gone up by four points, to 50 percent. Thank you to the vicious young Socialist Congresswomen. America will never buy your act! #MAGA2020," Trump tweeted.
Trump and the GOP stand for ‘blaming others if you’re not happy where you are’: Democratic congressman
Unapologetic about his racist attacks on four Democratic congresswomen of color, President Donald Trump stood smugly by at his Wednesday rally in Greenville, South Carolina as his supporters attacked Rep. Ilhan Omar (D-MN) with chants of "Send her back! Send her back!"
In conversation with CNN's Chris Cuomo, Rep. Cedric Richmond (D-LA) denounced it as just standard operating procedure for this president and the party that elected him.
"I want to talk health care, but ... [Trump] ain't going to campaign on health care," said Cuomo. "He's going to campaign that there's something wrong with the way you look and people like you are a little bit of a danger. And we're a little bit better off when you guys stay where you were before you were here. That's his campaign. He is confident. How do you counter?"