News & Politics

'He's an Amateur at This': Ex-CIA Operative Calls Trump 'Illiterate' on Intelligence Issues

This is the person who is supposed to make the country's national security decisions.

Photo Credit: CNN

President Donald Trump, the person in charge of American national security, has no idea how to read a basic intelligence report, according to former CIA operative Bob Baer.

Baer criticized the president Thursday on CNN in a discussion about Trump’s recent muddled statements on Russia’s interference in the 2016 election. After first casting doubt on Monday about the intelligence community’s finding that Russia had meddled in the election at the direction of President Vladimir Putin, Trump later in the week backtracked somewhat and said he trusted the U.S. agencies’ findings.

Then Wednesday night, the New York Times revealed that Trump had been shown clear and persuasive evidence of the meddling by the intelligence chiefs two weeks before his inauguration in January 2017 — making his reluctance to fully accept the claims even more baffling.

“The president is frankly… he’s illiterate when it comes to intelligence,” Baer said. “I have read that indictment against the 12 Russian intelligence officers. It couldn’t be any clearer, the intelligence can’t be any better. It’s nobody else but Russia, and they meddled in the elections to help Donald Trump.”

He continued: “It’s something he can’t admit. And he doesn’t understand the difference between human sources and intercepts and why they’re different. One you can rely on, and the other you can’t. He’s an amateur at this, and he’s trying to defend himself politically.”

Watch the clip below:

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Cody Fenwick is a reporter and editor. Follow him on Twitter @codytfenwick.