177 Former Officials Issue Joint Warning About Trump's Security Clearance Abuses

177 Former Officials Issue Joint Warning About Trump's Security Clearance Abuses

After Donald Trump stripped former CIA director John Brennan of his security clearance over Brennan’s outspoken criticism of Trump, 177 former national security officials have signed on to a letter expressing “strong opposition to actual or threatened removal of security clearances from former government officials.” 


Our signatures below do not necessarily mean that we concur with the opinions expressed by former CIA Director Brennan or the way in which he expressed them. What they do represent, however, is our firm belief that the country will be weakened if there is a political litmus test applied before seasoned experts are allowed to share their views.

This isn't the first such statement by former officials, and though the text of the letter is determinedly nonpartisan, a former acting CIA director tells Axios that “People are essentially saying to the president: 'We will not be intimidated by you. For those of us who have been speaking up, we will continue to. And if we haven't been, we’re going to start speaking up.'”

Trump is responding to pushback in a classic up-is-down-black-is-white kind of way:

Yes, people are speaking out against a president willing to strip security clearances for political reasons because they want to keep their security clearances. By this logic, John Lewis marched at Selma because he hoped to avoid a skull fracture.

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