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175 former US officials added to list denouncing Trump for revoking Brennan's security clearance

One hundred and seventy-five former US officials spanning service across intelligence agencies, the State De...

Posted: Aug 20, 2018 1:12 PM
Updated: Aug 20, 2018 1:12 PM

One hundred and seventy-five former US officials spanning service across intelligence agencies, the State Department, the National Security Council and the Department of Defense added their names on Monday to a list of intelligence officials denouncing President Donald Trump's decision to revoke former CIA Director John Brennan's security clearance.

"All of us believe it is critical to protect classified information from unauthorized disclosure. But we believe equally strongly that former government officials have the right to express their unclassified views on what they see as critical national security issues without fear of being punished for doing so," the letter states.

Continents and regions

Donald Trump

Eastern Europe

Europe

Government and public administration

Government bodies and offices

Government departments and authorities

Intelligence services

International relations and national security

Investigations

John Brennan

National security

Political Figures - US

Politics

Russia

Russia meddling investigation

US federal government

White House

"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," the group statement added. "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."

A similar statement was first signed by more than a dozen former intelligence officials last week. Sixty former CIA officials added their names to the statement soon after.

Brennan has been a fierce critic of Trump -- going so far as to calling Trump's actions alongside Russian President Vladimir Putin in a news conference after their summit in Helsinki, Finland, "nothing short of treasonous."

Monday's additions to the list denouncing Trump's revocation of Brennan's clearance include former US Ambassador to Russia Michael McFaul. CNN reported in July that Trump was entertaining a proposal raised by Putin in their summit talks that would allow Russians to interrogate US officials, including McFaul, in exchange for allowing special counsel Robert Mueller to interrogate suspected Russian hackers accused of interfering in the 2016 American election. The White House later said Trump disagreed with the proposal.

One of the new signees, former Deputy Secretary of State and former Deputy National Security Advisor Tony Blinken, told CNN's Alisyn Camerota on "New Day" Monday that the President has authority to revoke security clearances, "but it's an absolute abuse of that authority to do it for political purposes."

"And the President, himself, acknowledged that's why he did it," Blinken, a global affairs analyst for CNN, said. "There was no cause for taking away John Brennan's security clearance other than the fact that John is a critic, and the President associates him, wrongly, with the effort to find out if Russia was involved with meddling in the election and the President was involved, the campaign was involved. So this is a matter of profound principle."

Other signees to the original statement include former director of the CIA and National Security Agency Michael Hayden and former Director of National Intelligence James Clapper. Both have been outspoken against Trump and both are included on a list of officials whose security clearances the administration is considering pulling.

Trump announced on Wednesday that he was revoking Brennan's security clearance, first saying that the former CIA director posed a security risk. He later connected Brennan's security clearance revocation with the Russia investigation in an interview with The Wall Street Journal, saying the probe was a "witch hunt" and "these people led it."

Brennan, who served under President Barack Obama, was one of the intelligence chiefs who signed off on the intelligence community's January 2017 assessment that Russia interfered with the intent to help Trump and to hurt Hillary Clinton.

Mississippi Coronavirus Cases

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Cases: 143879

Reported Deaths: 3676
CountyCasesDeaths
DeSoto952799
Hinds9520193
Harrison6801105
Jackson6043116
Rankin521996
Lee477094
Madison4595102
Forrest360685
Jones341687
Lauderdale3340142
Lafayette312047
Washington3043106
Lamar273849
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Oktibbeha237460
Lowndes227562
Neshoba2170113
Panola210347
Marshall206547
Leflore200389
Pontotoc192527
Monroe188877
Sunflower188754
Lincoln183664
Warren171757
Tate163049
Pike159958
Union159025
Copiah158840
Yazoo149538
Scott149429
Coahoma146742
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Simpson143153
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Adams134148
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Holmes124261
George121523
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Winston115824
Wayne115522
Hancock113337
Marion109046
Attala106133
Tishomingo105542
Newton102829
Chickasaw102132
Tallahatchie94727
Clarke88153
Clay86226
Jasper80421
Walthall73728
Montgomery71925
Calhoun71213
Stone71014
Carroll70114
Lawrence69814
Noxubee68917
Smith68616
Yalobusha67626
Perry63925
Tunica59519
Greene58222
Claiborne57416
Jefferson Davis53817
Humphreys52318
Amite50714
Benton48217
Quitman4766
Webster41614
Kemper40615
Wilkinson38422
Jefferson33511
Franklin3155
Sharkey30617
Choctaw3057
Issaquena1094
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Alabama Coronavirus Cases

Cases: 232506

Reported Deaths: 3457
CountyCasesDeaths
Jefferson30318491
Mobile19260356
Tuscaloosa12446148
Madison12204146
Montgomery12000232
Shelby971276
Baldwin819984
Lee750464
Morgan610447
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Lauderdale378353
Walker348096
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Colbert294341
Jackson290524
Blount275436
Autauga261739
Franklin243633
Coffee230315
Dale225454
Dallas219631
Russell21753
Chilton216137
Covington212333
Escambia194031
Tallapoosa168590
Chambers167548
Clarke154919
Pike154714
Marion133935
Winston122523
Lawrence121436
Geneva11678
Marengo116424
Barbour116010
Pickens114118
Bibb113617
Butler113341
Randolph99521
Cherokee98524
Hale91531
Washington89818
Clay88823
Henry8386
Fayette83116
Lowndes78529
Monroe76811
Cleburne74214
Crenshaw70030
Macon69420
Bullock68919
Conecuh66814
Perry6686
Wilcox62318
Lamar6227
Sumter55322
Choctaw41713
Greene39917
Coosa3064
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