Unlikely Trump knew about Russian “bounty plot” says former ranking CIA operative

Saying the newest Russiagate has little validity, Brad Johnson gives several reasons why this is a partisan attack on Trump and explains, from an insider’s view, other reasons to disregard this latest volley in the war against a duly elected president. Johnson retired after 25 years in the CIA as a Chief of Station after spending many years in volatile regions overseas. He founded Americans for Intelligence Reform and this story shows you why he remains so passionate about these issues.

 


Brad Johnson it’s June 30 and the Russia
00:03
scandal Russia gate has been rebranded
00:06
in a whole new way
00:09
there’s no no prostitutes in this one
00:11
though what can you tell us about the
00:14
the bounty Russian American thing yeah
00:19
here’s another one I mean is this kind
00:21
of appears to me at least so far to be
00:23
out of the same playbook what’s being
00:27
said right now is that Russia was paying
00:32
bounties for Americans to be killed in
00:37
Afghanistan and so to the u-local
00:41
terrorist groups and so the you know
00:45
that’s that’s the not the core part of
00:47
what this intelligence supposedly is now
00:49
from there what they’re trying to do is
00:52
tag President Trump with some sort of
00:55
fault out of all of this and so this was
00:59
a leaker apparently there was a report
01:01
that was sent up now I’ve heard various
01:04
things so I’m not sure but it one of the
01:06
things was that it was supposedly
01:07
included as a line item in the
01:10
presidential daily briefing the PDB
01:13
which is a daily intelligence document
01:16
from all of the agencies but you know
01:20
basically is a CIA document that goes to
01:23
the president to read every day and it’s
01:25
one of those it’s a document that within
01:27
the intelligence community does have
01:29
wide distribution it’s something I read
01:32
for decades you know daily as I had time
01:35
and apparently it was a line item in
01:38
that because there’s four blown articles
01:40
and there’s little bullet point things
01:41
and stuff like that which I I am you
01:44
know the the president has repeatedly
01:46
made comments about certain levels of
01:48
distrust with the intelligence community
01:50
so I don’t think it’s something that he
01:51
reads closely and I don’t think it’s the
01:53
document that it used to be
01:55
traditionally where it was had the high
01:57
level of importance and and veracity
02:00
involved in what’s in there that it used
02:03
to have it’s a more damaged piece of
02:06
work in my opinion but that’s a separate
02:09
discussion completely at any rate
02:12
it could have been some other written
02:14
report it’s not confirmed but that’s
02:15
what’s being stated publicly by a lot of
02:17
people and so the President may or may
02:19
not read those but then this information
02:23
was taken it looks like the scenario is
02:24
it was included in the presidential
02:26
Daily Brief the PDB president reads
02:28
those or glances at it doesn’t read the
02:30
whole thing doesn’t see this thing goes
02:32
on through the other stuff now what has
02:34
been confirmed by the Director of
02:37
National Intelligence which is the DNI
02:39
is Ratcliff and the CIA director Gina
02:43
Haskell is that the president was never
02:45
briefed on it so there no one ever
02:48
brought it to his specific attention so
02:50
as everyone knows a guy like that has
02:52
got thousands of documents passing
02:55
across his desk every day and so he only
02:57
reads what particularly interests him
02:59
which is everybody does it
03:01
or if anything’s brought to his specific
03:03
attention and this was not so it’s
03:06
almost you know 95 percent likely that
03:10
that even if that had gone through a PDB
03:13
he easily would have missed it because I
03:15
guarantee you he doesn’t read the PDB
03:17
cover to cover every morning I can
03:20
guarantee us all that aspect of it so
03:22
with this leak what they’re doing and we
03:26
saw Chuck Schumer today on television
03:32
saying it’s you know how disgusting it
03:34
is for President Trump you know he’s a
03:36
fool either way and it’s a lose-lose for
03:38
the president because he’s either so
03:40
incompetent that he doesn’t read what
03:43
he’s given or he got it and ignored it
03:45
and that the Russians are doing all this
03:46
now of course what Chuck Schumer is
03:49
doing is a hundred percent political
03:51
there’s no real meaning behind what he’s
03:52
saying he’s just political guy and
03:55
because first of all the information is
03:57
not confirmed and it’s not information
04:00
that there’s even agreement within the
04:02
intelligence community on it came from
04:04
one little space so I and who knows if
04:08
that’s true or not my inclination on it
04:11
is that it’s probably not true to begin
04:14
with I mean it’s certainly feasible and
04:17
possible but why would they bother you
04:19
know they if they wouldn’t need to put a
04:21
bounty on it
04:22
if the Russians were interested in us
04:23
all they need to do is fund Taliban or
04:26
people
04:26
like that in the area that are willing
04:27
to fight against the Americans and
04:29
that’s what everybody has traditionally
04:32
done in sort of that covert action arena
04:34
they wouldn’t necessarily put a bounty
04:36
out on anybody because you put bounties
04:39
out on you know Americans you know we
04:41
can put bounties out on you and it’s one
04:42
of those things where you just typically
04:44
don’t do it because you don’t want the
04:46
payback on that so I find it unlikely
04:48
but possible so it’s probably false
04:51
reporting from the very beginning there
04:53
was probably something that was put down
04:54
there as unverified information so it
04:57
didn’t really get pushed up to the top
04:58
where it would have been directly
05:00
briefed to the president United States
05:01
but it was a little line-item somebody
05:04
out there in that intelligence community
05:06
spotted it knew that if they leaked it
05:09
to the press it could be used as a
05:11
hammer to beat up President Trump I
05:13
wouldn’t be surprised since this
05:15
apparently came out a while back that
05:17
they’ve been saving this on the Shelf to
05:19
use to just bring out at a time when the
05:21
news was quiet so they could have more
05:23
to try to beat up president Trump with
05:25
over the months leading up to the
05:27
election so I would say it’s basically a
05:30
hundred percent that 99.9 percent that
05:33
this is pure politics in action it’s the
05:35
same thing as the Muller investigation
05:38
and the impeachment and all that it’s
05:40
all stuff based on nothing that’s made
05:43
up but presented in such a way that it
05:45
can be used to criticize President Trump
05:47
and the DNI Ratcliffe came out with a
05:52
statement and you know basically talk
05:54
and also sort of the CIA director Gina
05:57
Haskell both of them cannot said that
05:59
look leaking and classified documents is
06:01
damaging to national security and they
06:03
kind of laid out their reasoning for it
06:05
which I mean that’s true and something
06:07
certainly I I resist am NOT a proponent
06:09
of leaking classified information and
06:11
that type of things should be stopped if
06:13
they can find who these people are I
06:15
think they should be prosecuted for what
06:17
they’ve done which is a federal crime
06:18
leaking classified information out of
06:21
the what appears to be an article out of
06:24
the presidential Daily Brief so I’m
06:26
hoping that that’s the way this this
06:27
goes but I would be willing to suggest
06:31
that because Chuck Schumer was the one
06:34
that is sort of was prepared to discuss
06:36
this very quickly and had such a nasty
06:38
opinion that he came out
06:40
and you know we can all tell who are the
06:42
haters and and Chuck falls into that
06:44
category I mean that man’s a hater and I
06:47
wouldn’t be surprised at all if he knows
06:49
and knew in advance of who was holding
06:52
on the information who was gonna leak it
06:54
and and was then therefore prepared in
06:56
advance to make statements now that’s
06:58
pure speculation on my partner nobody’s
07:00
told me that don’t know for a fact but
07:03
I’m I’d be willing to bet that senior
07:05
people within the Democratic Party had
07:07
coordinated this in advance with whoever
07:09
that leaker was so we’ll see this then
07:12
that’s certainly the methodology that
07:13
was used just over the Ukraine phone
07:15
call this is all stuff coordinated in
07:17
advance between people who knew each
07:19
other so I think it’s just another page
07:22
out of the same playbook and it’s
07:24
absolutely nothing burger and it’s going
07:26
to be dead and gone out of the out of
07:29
the new cycle here within you know two
07:31
three four days because there’s nothing
07:32
there there’s no there there so it
07:35
sounds a little like it’s essentially
07:37
the the partisan weaponization of trivia
07:40
yes I would say that’s a beautifully
07:44
beautiful description of exactly that
07:54
you
08:22
[Music]
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