When Russian Foreign Minister Lavrov and Ambassador Kislyak visited the White House last week President Trump shared highly classified information with them about ISIS that US allies don’t even know.
The Washington Post reported this afternoon that Trump shared information about laptops and aviation security. The source of the information – an intelligence sharing partner – did not know that the information was going to be shared with the Russians and Trump’s decision to share information makes it possible that the partner will be reluctant to cooperate further with US intelligence agencies.
One anonymous government official cited in the Washington Post story expressed concerns about President Trump’s understanding of foreign policy and intelligence: “Trump seems to be very reckless, and doesn’t grasp the gravity of the things he’s dealing with, especially when it comes to intelligence and national security. And it’s all clouded because of this problem he has with Russia.”
It’s difficult to discern if Trump was boasting about the quality of US intelligence or if he simply didn’t understand the consequences of his actions – though both are distinct possibilities.
Whatever his motivation, the US needs MORE intelligence and partners rather than fewer and Trump’s carelessness has made it more difficult for us to combat ISIS and terrorism.