Tag Archives: Trump

Is the Trump Whistleblower Really a Whistleblower? (ft. John Kiriakou & Thomas Drake)

The mysterious whistleblower at the center of the impeachment complaint against President Trump is being fiercely protected by government officials and the mainstream media. In this episode of Truth In Media with Ben Swann, we discuss how the overall treatment of this whistleblower is incredibly uncharacteristic given the government’s track record of ruthlessly retaliating against whistleblowers.

 

In interviews with whistleblowers Thomas Drake (former NSA senior executive) and John Kiriakou (former CIA officer), we discuss the aftermath that followed their own experiences in exposing government crimes. We also talk about the ways whistleblowers are primarily treated with contempt by the government, and the strange circumstances of this new whistleblower and their complaint which has led to an impeachment inquiry into President Trump.

Reality Check: Rep. Omar’s Comments On Israel Were Not Anti-Semitic

Leading House Democrats, including Nancy Pelosi plan to offer a resolution Wednesday condemning anti-Semitism in response to Congresswoman Ilhan Omar’s latest remarks on Israel.

House Republicans and others want Pelosi to go even further and for Omar to be removed from the House Foreign Affairs Committee all because she questioned the lobbying efforts of a foreign nation.

What did she say? How are those comments being twisted?

Let’s give it a reality check you won’t see anywhere else.

Reality Check: Will U.S. Use “Humanitarian Aid” As Justification for Regime Change in Venezuela?

Is the U.S. military under the Trump administration about to forcibly create regime change in Venezuela?

For months I have been saying that would not happen but now, all signs seem to be pointing to this reality.  Will the U.S. claim, just like we did in Libya, that a humanitarian crisis is underway and that a military intervention is the only way to protect the people of Venezuela?

I’ll explain in this reality check you won’t get anywhere else.

Has U.S. Foreign Policy Created The Migrant Crisis in Honduras?

A crowd of nearly 7,000 migrants are moving from Honduras, currently in Mexico and on their way to the U.S. border.

President Trump says he will not allow them in and the situation is once again becoming a huge political debate over immigration.

But immigration is only a symptom of the actual problem. Reality Check, if you want to debate the actual problem then you have to talk about u.s. foreign policy in Honduras and Central American countries for over the last 100 years that has led to this migrant crisis.
Other media is going to ignore it but we’re not.

Lets give it a reality check.

Watchdog Group: Emails Reveal FBI Advised Comey to Coordinate with Mueller on Congressional Testimony

Washington, D.C. – Emails obtained by government watchdog group Judicial Watch indicate that senior FBI officials advised former FBI Director James Comey to seek the advice of Special Counsel Robert Mueller prior to giving testimony to “any congressional committee” regarding alleged collusion between the Trump presidential campaign and Russia.

The emails appear to be the first evidence of reported coordination between Comey and Mueller, and reveal that Comey was advised by the FBI to consult with Mueller regarding the circumstances surrounding his firing prior to giving congressional testimony.

According to Judicial Watch in a Facebook post:

Judicial Watch released new emails from the Department of Justice showing that former FBI Director James Comey was advised by FBI officials in May 2017 to consult with Special Counsel Robert Mueller prior to testifying before any congressional committees regarding Russian meddling in the 2016 presidential election and his firing as FBI director.

According to numerous news reports, Comey met directly with Mueller previous to his June 8, 2017, testimony before the Senate Intelligence Committee. Sources said that Comey’s opening statement and subsequent testimony were coordinated with Mueller. At the hearing, Comey revealed that he had intentionally leaked material from a memo allegedly documenting a meeting with President Trump in order to help assure the appointment of a special counsel.

These documents show that James Comey, who was fired by the president, nevertheless had easy, friendly access to the FBI as he prepped his infamous anti-Trump testimony to the Senate. This collusion led to Comey’s attacking President Trump and misusing FBI records as part of a vendetta against the president.

The Department of Justice emails obtained by Judicial Watch appear to bolster previous reports that some of Comey’s testimony given to the Senate Intelligence Committee, including his opening statement, may have been coordinated at least partially with Mueller.

Appearing on Fox Business, Judicial Watch president Tom Fitton said that “it’s further confirmation that both the FBI and Mueller had coordinated on Mr. Comey’s anti-Trump, Russia testimony from last year.”

Comey admitted during his June 8, 2017 testimony that he had leaked information from memos about his meetings with President Trump while director of the FBI. Comey provided the memos, some of which reportedly contained classified information, to his associate Daniel Richman, who then leaked them to the New York Times. Comey admitted that he leaked the memos with the assumption that they would be strategically leaked to the news organization to spark a special counsel investigation of President Trump.

“I asked a friend of mine to share the content of the memo with a reporter. Didn’t do it myself, for a variety of reasons,” Comey told the Senate Intelligence Committee. “But I asked him to because I thought that might prompt the appointment of a special counsel.”

Fitton said the fact that Comey was allowed to even discuss his conversations with President Trump was anomalous.

“Typically, former government officials or current government officials aren’t allowed to testify about communications they had with the president directly,” Fitton said on “Lou Dobbs Tonight.”

The Judicial Watch president directly questioned whether the emails revealed improper collusion between former FBI Director Comey and Special Counsel Mueller.

“You have to wonder why the FBI and Mueller allowed Comey to come out there and attack the president,” he said.

American Journalist in Douma: Residents Say Chemical Attack Staged by ‘Terrorist Rebels’

Douma, Syria — An exclusive report by Pearson Sharp of One America News, who went to the site of the alleged chemical weapons attack in the war-torn town of Douma outside the capital of Damascus, reported that residents there deny an attack happened and instead claim it was staged by rebel forces in an effort to incite a response from Western forces.

Sharp explained that during his investigation he interviewed between 30 to 40 residents of Douma, and in a series of social media posts claimed:

Sharp claims that of all of the people he interviewed on the ground in Douma — which he asserted were not scripted or staged, but with actual local residents — not one person told him that a chemical attack had taken place. Sharp said he was told the attack was staged by terrorists who were in control of the area. He also reported that the residents revealed that they were glad to see the rebels, whom they referred to as terrorists, be defeated and praised Assad and his government.

Russia has accused the UK government of being complicit in a “false flag” event in Douma in collusion with the White Helmets, and claims to be in possession of “irrefutable evidence,” according to Russia’s Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=YkQODKjDVws

Russian TV Advises Viewers to Stockpile Food/Water in Preparation for US Conflict

Moscow, Russia — Russian state TV recently ran a segment advising citizens to stockpile food and water as the discussion of a “catastrophic” conflict between superpowers intensified over Syria. Standing in front of an image of a nuclear explosion, an anchor for Russia’s Vesti 24 explained to viewers how to stock their bunkers with basic supplies in the event of war between the Cold War foes.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=IHo2PNXazdE

For “those who succumb to panic and decide to spend all their savings,” the newscaster  recommended, they buy salt, oatmeal and other products that have a long shelf-life, according to Newsweek. He went on to explain that powdered milk lasts five years, while sugar and rice can last up to eight years, before showing videos of pasta cooking in a bomb shelter. Additionally, the presenter said that at least 30 liters of water would be necessary for personal hygiene, food preparation and drinking water.

“It should be noted that real panic isn’t here but across the ocean,” the Vesti 24 newcaster added,  pointing out that sales of bomb shelters in the United States “took off” after Trump’s election.

[Related: Veterans Group Warns US Attack on Syria Could Lead to Nuclear War]

The segment aired just before the US, UK, and France unleashed military strikes in response to allegations of chemical weapons attack by the Syrian government in the Syrian town of Douma over the weekend. Russia and the Syrian government have denied a chemical weapons attack took place, instead claiming the attack had been staged by the White Helmets, a self-purported Syria civil defense group hailed as heroes in the western world, but who supporters of the Syrian government claim act as civil defense for Islamist rebel groups operating under the auspices of being “moderate rebels.”

Russia’s Chief of the General Staff of Armed Forces, Valery Gerasimov, warned nearly a month ago that Syrian rebels were preparing to utilize chemical weapons— to be blamed on the Syrian government— as a justification for U.S. strikes on Damascus, and cautioned that “in the event of a threat to our military servicemen’s lives, Russia’s Armed Forces will take retaliatory measures to target both the missiles and their delivery vehicles.”

During an interview on Tuesday, Alexander Zasypkin, Russia’s ambassador to Lebanon, reiterated Gerismov’s warning stating, “If there is a strike by the Americans, then the missiles will be downed and even the sources from which the missiles were fired.”

“The U.S. needs to keep in mind not only the adversarial position of Russia, which of course is the case, but the Russian nuclear potential…An escalation in Syria that affects Russia may lead to a military conflict with Russia, which has an escalation trajectory towards a nuclear war,” Ariel Cohen, a senior fellow at the Atlantic Council, told Newsweek.

https://m.youtube.com/watch?v=hcOxFAp-nx4

Report: Russian Black Sea Fleet on “High Level” Alert

Washington, D.C.— The Russian Black Sea Fleet has reportedly been placed on high level combat alert after a U.S. ship left Cyprus for Syrian waters, according to the Russian Ministry of Defense as reported by Al-Masdar News of Beirut. Additionally, NBC News is reporting that the Russian military is jamming U.S. military drones operating over Syria, which is affecting American military operations, according to several U.S. officials. These moves by Russia likely come in anticipation of a possible U.S.-led coalition military strike.

A U.S. military strike— a decision yet to be made by President Trump, but one which he has strongly suggested— would be the result of an alleged chemical weapons attack in the in the city of Douma that was blamed on the Syrian Army by “rebels” as well as the White Helmets. In response, Russia claimed that their investigators found no traces of chemicals being used at the alleged attack site. An investigation team from the Organization for the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons (OPCW) will be traveling to Syria to conduct their own research following a request from Russia and Syria.

While Washington was quick to report that the Assad government was behind the alleged chemical attack, Russia warned weeks ago of false flag chemical weapons attacks by Islamist rebels intent on blaming the Assad government, as Truth in Media previously reported:

Russia’s Chief of the General Staff of Armed Forces, Valery Gerasimov, warned on Tuesday that Syrian rebels are preparing to utilize chemical weapons— to be blamed on the Syrian government— as a justification for U.S. strikes on Damascus, and cautioned that “in the event of a threat to our military servicemen’s lives, Russia’s Armed Forces will take retaliatory measures to target both the missiles and their delivery vehicles.”

“This has been confirmed by the discovery of a laboratory for the production of chemical weapons in the village of Aftris, which was liberated from terrorists,” Gerasimov stressed.

“As a countermeasure, Washington plans to deliver a missile and bomb strike against Damascus’ government districts,” Gerasimov continued.

The increased defensive alertness of Russian forces could raise concern, given Gerasimov’s warning of “retaliatory measures to target both missiles and their delivery vehicles.”

[Watch: Reality Check: No Sarin Gas Used by Assad in Syria?]

According to NBC News’ report:

The Russians began jamming some smaller U.S. drones several weeks ago, the officials said, after a series of suspected chemical weapons attacks on civilians in rebel-held eastern Ghouta. The Russian military was concerned the U.S. military would retaliate for the attacks and began jamming the GPS systems of drones operating in the area, the officials explained.

Dr. Todd Humphreys, an expert on GPS spoofing and jamming and director of the Radionavigation Laboratory at the University of Texas at Austin, warned that the Russian GPS jamming could be powerful, potentially causing them to malfunction.

“GPS receivers in most drones can be fairly easily jammed,” Humphreys said. “At the very least it could cause some serious confusion.”

NBC News reports that the Pentagon refused to say whether the jamming is causing drones to crash over concerns of operational security, but one official speaking off the record said the Russian jamming is sophisticated and has made a tactical impact on U.S. military operations in Syria.

“The U.S. military maintains sufficient countermeasures and protections to ensure the safety of our manned and unmanned aircraft, our forces and the missions they support,” Pentagon spokesman Eric Pahon told NBC.

An unnamed U.S. official told NBC that the tactic is having an operational impact on U.S. military operations in Syria, and said “the equipment being used was developed by the Russian military and is very sophisticated, proving effective even against some encrypted signals and anti-jamming receivers.”

Investigative journalist Ben Swann’s most recent Reality Check fully summarizes the most recent chemical attack and the much larger conflict surrounding the incident:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=hcOxFAp-nx4

Snowden Explains Deep State’s Influence on Presidents Obama, Trump

Famed whistleblower Edward Snowden was recently interviewed by Italian publication La Repubblic. The publication noted the 5-year mark of Snowden’s historic act of blowing the whistle on the NSA’s expansive surveillance programs and that “many thought he would end up very badly, but when he connects via videolink for this interview with la Repubblica, he seems to be doing very well: the frank smile and peaceful face of someone who is easy in his mind.”

In an excerpt from the exclusive interview, Snowden explained how the presidencies of both Obama and Trump are shaped by the Deep State following an illuminating question by journalist Stefania Maurizi.

Stefania Maurizi: We saw that President Obama, who was an outsider to the US military-intelligence complex, initially wanted to reign in the abuses of agencies like the CIA and the NSA, but in the end he did very little. Now we see a confrontation between president Trump and so-called Deep State, which includes the CIA and the NSA. Can a US president govern in opposition to such powerful entities?

Edward Snowden: Obama is certainly an instructive case. This is a president who campaigned on a platform of ending warrantless wiretapping in the United States, he said “that’s not who we are, that’s not what we do,” and once he became the president, he expanded the program.  He said he was going to close Guantanamo but he kept it open, he said he was going to limit extrajudicial killings and drone strikes that has been so routine in the Bush years. But Obama went on to authorize vastly more drone strikes than Bush. It became an industry.

As for this idea that there is a Deep State, now the Deep State is not just the intelligence agencies, it is really a way of referring to the career bureaucracy of government. These are officials who sit in powerful positions, who don’t leave when presidents do, who watch presidents come and go, they influence policy, they influence presidents and say: this is what we have always done, this is what we must do, and if you don’t do this, people will die.

It is very easy to persuade a new president who comes in, who has never had these powers, but has always wanted this job and wants very, very badly to do that job well. A bureaucrat sitting there for the last twenty years says: I understand what you said, I respect your principles, but if you do what you promised, people will die. It is very easy for a president to go: well, for now, I am going to set this controversy to the side, I’m going to take your advice, let you guys decide how these things should be done, and then I will revisit it, when I have a little more experience, maybe in a few months, maybe in a few years, but then they never do.

This is what we saw quite clearly happen in the case of Barack Obama: when this story [of Snowden exposing the NSA’s mass surveillance] came forward in 2013, when Obama had been president for five years, one of the defences for this from his aides and political allies was: oh, Obama was just about to fix this problem!  And sure enough, he eventually was forced from the wave of criticism to make some limited reforms, but he did not go far enough to end all of the programs that were in violation of the law or the constitution of the United States. That too was an intentional choice: he could have certainly used the scandal to advocate for all of the changes that he had campaigned on, to deliver on all of his promises, but in those five years he had become president, he discovered something else, which is that there are benefits from having very powerful intelligence agencies, there are benefits from having these career bureaucrats on your side, using their spider web over government for your benefit.

[RELATED: Snowden Documents: NSA Worked to Track Bitcoin Users]

Imagine you are Barack Obama, and you realise – yes, when you were campaigning you were saying: spying on people without a warrant is a problem, but then you realise: you can read Angela Merkel’s text messages. Why bother calling her and asking her opinion, when you can just read her mind by breaking the law? It sounds like a joke, but it is a very seductive thing. Secrecy is perhaps the most corrupting of all government powers, because it takes public officials and divorces them from accountability to the public.

When we look at the case of Trump, who is perhaps the worst of politicians, we see the same dynamic occurring. This is a president who said the CIA is the enemy, it’s like Nazi Germany, they’re listening to his phone calls, and all of these other things, some claims which are true, some claims which are absolutely not.  A few months later, he is authorizing major powers for these same agencies that he has called his enemies.

And this gets to the central crux of your question, which is: can any president oppose this?  The answer is certainly. The president has to have some familiarity going in with the fact that this pitch is going to be made, that they are going to try to scare him or her into compliance. The president has to be willing to stand strongly on line and say: ‘I was elected to represent the interests of the American people, and if you’re not willing to respect the constitution and our rights, I will disband your agency, and create a new one’. I think they can definitely be forced into compliance, because these officials fear prison, just like every one of us.

Rand Paul: Deep State Exists, Uses Intelligence for Political Purposes

Washington, D.C.— Sen. Rand Paul (R-KY) said Tuesday during an appearance on The Laura Ingraham Show podcast that the term “deep state” accurately describes how an unelected bureaucracy of national security officials in positions of power exert influence without Congressional oversight.

“Absolutely, there is a deep state, because the deep state is the intelligence agencies that do not have oversight,” he said. “Only eight people in Congress know what they’re doing, and traditionally, those eight people have been a rubber stamp to let the intelligence communities do whatever they want. There is no skeptic among the eight people that are supposedly overseeing the intelligence community.”

The “Gang of Eight”  that Paul referenced is made up of the majority and minority leaders of the House of Representatives and Senate, along with the chairmen and ranking members of the two intelligence committees, and are the select few members of Congress with real-time access to America’s most sensitive intelligence.

[RELATED: Reality Check: Ex CIA Director Says U.S. Meddles for a ‘Good Cause’]

Paul pointed out that he believed Obama-era CIA Director John Brennan, Director of National Intelligence James Clapper and others used intelligence collected “without any judicial warrants” for political purposes, in addition to “try to bring Trump down.”

“John Brennan and James Clapper were doing whatever the hell they wanted, without any judicial warrants, and I think there were numerous people in the Obama administration who were using intelligence — one, to try to bring Trump down; but two, also, they were using it for political purposes,” he said. “And this is very, very worrisome.”

Paul evidenced his point by noting Brennan’s politicized tweet over the weekend calling Trump a corrupt demagogue, and promising that America would “triumph” over him.

“This is the real problem,” Paul said. “And [founding father James] Madison warned about this from the beginning. Madison said that men are not angels. And all you gotta do is look at John Brennan’s tweet to know that he’s not an angel. And listen to James Clapper lying to the Senate about whether they were spying on Americans.”

Paul previously tweeted that Brennan’s attacks on the “Bill of Rights” and “freedoms of every American” while running the CIA were “disgraceful.”

Further solidifying Paul’s point about “men are not angels,” Samantha Power, former UN Ambassador under President Obama, issued an ominous tweet: “Not a good idea to piss off John Brennan.”

Many took this tweet by Powers as an implicit threat on behalf of Brennan. After strong social media backlash following her tweet, Powers sent a follow-up tweet that aimed to walk back the implied threat she had first issued.

Rand Paul’s commentary starts at roughly 21:30 in the podcast below.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=3E7BPxqTitg

Trump’s New CIA Director Gina Haspel Oversaw US Torture Program

Washington, D.C.— After announcing Tuesday that CIA Director Mike Pompeo had been selected to replace outgoing Secretary of State Rex Tillerson, President Donald Trump named Deputy CIA Director Gina Haspel as his choice to become the intelligence agency’s new Director.

Haspel is intimately connected to one of the CIA’s most controversial programs in recent memory, as she was in charge of the U.S. torture of terror suspects. The newly named CIA director was reportedly involved in the torture and interrogation of two suspected members of al-Qaeda, Abu Zubaydah and Abd al-Rahim al-Nashiri, while working as a clandestine officer in Thailand in 2002.

According to a report in The New Yorker:

From 2003 to 2005, Gina Haspel was a senior official overseeing a top-secret C.I.A. program that subjected dozens of suspected terrorists to savage interrogations, which included depriving them of sleep, squeezing them into coffins, and forcing water down their throats. In 2002, Haspel was among the C.I.A. officers present at the interrogation of Abu Zubaydah, an Al Qaeda suspect who was tortured so brutally that at one point he appeared to be dead.

Not only did Haspel oversee the controversial torture program, but in 2005 she also took part in the coverup of the evidence in relation to the torture program by destroying recordings of the torture of Zubaydah and al-Nashiri at which she was present.

[RELATED: ACLU, Human Rights Watch Call for Criminal Investigation into CIA Torture Tactics]

Until 2009, CIA operatives were able to legally torture suspected terrorists in “black sites” across the world until then-President Barack Obama ended the practice via executive order. The secret CIA program, known as R.D.I.— rendition, detention, and interrogation— involved kidnapping terror suspects from across the world and delivering them to third party countries to be tortured.

John Sifton, a senior official at Human Rights Watch, said that Haspel’s extensive connection to the secret CIA program is significant.

“You are putting a person in a leadership position who was centrally involved in an illegal program,” Sifton told The New Yorker.

The promotion of Haspel is a reflection of Trump and Pompeo’s proclivity to accept torture as legitimate. Trump has previously stated that he would like to reinstate waterboarding, with Pompeo previously on record noting that he would consider reinstating it. Trump’s own Secretary of Secretary of Defense, James Mattis, told him that torture was ineffective, and that a pack of cigarettes and a couple of beers would elicit more intelligence than torture.

Sen. Ron Wyden weighed in on the announcement, noting that the “government can no longer cover up disturbing facts from her past.”

“Ms. Haspel’s background makes her unsuitable to serve as CIA director,” Sen. Ron Wyden (D-Ore.) said in a statement Tuesday. “Her nomination must include total transparency about this background, which I called for more than a year ago when she was appointed deputy director. If Ms. Haspel seeks to serve at the highest levels of U.S. intelligence, the government can no longer cover up disturbing facts from her past.”

Trump Praises Chinese President Xi Jinping’s Consolidation of Power

Palm Beach, FL – During a private luncheon speech to Republican donors at Mar-a-Lago on Saturday, President Trump praised Chinese President Xi Jinping for his recent moves to consolidate power and extend his political tenure.

“He’s now president for life. President for life. And he’s great,” Trump said, according to a recording obtained by CNN. “And look, he was able to do that. I think it’s great. Maybe we’ll have to give that a shot someday.”

Trump’s comments followed an announcement from China’s Communist Party that it will be voting this week to alter the country’s constitution to abolish term limits — a move that would theoretically secure Xi as president indefinitely.

In a report for Vox, Carl Minzner, a professor at Fordham Law School, explained:

With the removal of these term limits in the constitution, that also sets up the likelihood — the extremely strong likelihood — that going forward, Xi Jinping is likely to serve in all three roles [head of state, general secretary of the Community Party, and head of the military] indefinitely into the future, which of course would be a significant reversal from recent practice since the beginning of China’s reform era.

CNN reported that during his speech, Trump appeared to reflect that he’d received unfair treatment regarding the ongoing Russian collusion investigation by Special Counsel Robert Mueller, in comparison to the lack of legal scrutiny opponent Hillary Clinton received for her activities.

“I’m telling you, it’s a rigged system, folks,” Trump said according to CNN. “I’ve been saying that for a long time. It’s a rigged system. And we don’t have the right people in there yet. We have a lot of great people, but certain things, we don’t have the right people.”

Trump was possibly referring to Attorney General Jeff Sessions, who was recently chastised byTrump for opening an OIG investigation into alleged FISA surveillance abuses rather than a criminal probe; Trump described the situation as “DISGRACEFUL” regarding Sessions’ continued refusal to launch a criminal investigation into other potentially criminal activities carried out by Clinton in regards to Uranium One and her private email server.

https://twitter.com/realDonaldTrump/status/968856971075051521

[RELATED: Reality Check: GOP Memo and FISA Problems]

Trump’s remarks, which CNN illustrated as “upbeat, lengthy, and peppered with jokes and laughter,” also questioned whether Clinton could be a “happy person” after her loss to Trump in the 2016 presidential election.

“Is Hillary a happy person? Do you think she’s happy?” Trump asked. “When she goes home at night, does she say, ‘What a great life?’ I don’t think so. You never know. I hope she’s happy.”

Trump also took aim at former President George W. Bush and the intelligence community that provided false intelligence indicating Iraq possessed WMD’s, labeling the invasion of Iraq “the single worst decision ever made” and likening it to “throwing a big fat brick into a hornet’s nest.”

“Here we are, like the dummies of the world, because we had bad politicians running our country for a long time,” Trump proclaimed. “That was Bush. Another real genius. That was Bush,” he continued sarcastically. “That turned out to be wonderful intelligence. Great intelligence agency there.”

Trump Halts Declassifying Democrat Memo; Revisions Underway

Washington, D.C.— On Friday evening, President Trump declined to release the Democratic House Intelligence memo, noting that he was “unable” to declassify the memo, citing the “significant concerns” of both the FBI and the U.S. Department of Justice (DOJ) in relation to releasing the memo, due to “longstanding principles regarding the protection of intelligence sources and methods, ongoing investigations, and other similarly sensitive information,” according to a written statement from White House Counsel Donald McGahn.

According to a report by The Hill:

White House counsel Don McGahn wrote a letter to House Intelligence Committee Chairman Devin Nunes (R-Calif.) explaining that “although the president is inclined to declassify” the Democratic memo, the administration believes it would create “especially significant concerns” for “national security and law enforcement interests.”
Trump’s legal team insists that it came to that conclusion at the behest of senior officials at the Office of the Director of National Intelligence and the Department of Justice (DOJ).

The letter from McGahn to Nunes specified that certain information could not be released without compromising “sources and methods, ongoing investigations, and other similarly sensitive information.” A separate letter to McGahn from FBI Director Wray and Deputy Attorney General Rosenstein referenced information identified within the memo holding “national security or law enforcement concerns.” The FBI had previously echoed similar concerns about the release of the Nunes memo prior to Trump’s approval of the release.

The Democratic memo is reportedly ten pages long and is written in part as a rebuttal of the recently released GOP House Intelligence Committee memo, which claimed to have exposed politicization of the FBI and DOJ and lying by omission to the FISA court in an effort to attain surveillance warrants on Trump campaign staff.

McGahn wrote that in the name of maintaining transparency, President Trump had directed the DOJ to give technical assistance to the committee to a help revise the memo based on the “significant concerns” of the FBI and DOJ.

“The Executive Branch stands ready to review any subsequent draft of the February 5th Memorandum for declassification at the earliest opportunity,” McGahn’s letter declared.

On Saturday morning, President Trump took to Twitter to accuse the Democrats of playing politics with classified information, claiming that Democrats knew that inclusion of “sources and methods (and more) would have to be heavily redacted, whereupon they would blame the White House for lack of transparency.”

https://twitter.com/realDonaldTrump/status/962330457886076928

Democrats including Sen. Dianne Feinstein (D-CA) and House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi have criticized Trump for approving the release of the Nunes memo while blocking the release of the Democratic memo.

Chairman of the House committee, Rep. Devin Nunes, who ran point on the GOP’s FBI/FISA memo, said Democrats should follow the guidance of the DOJ’s recommendations and “make the appropriate technical changes and redactions” in order to allow their memo into the public domain.

Congressman and House Intelligence Committee member Jim Himes (D-CT) said on Saturday that the Committee plans to apply redactions to the memo, according to the New York Times. On Sunday, Committee member Adam Schiff (D-CA) said that “we’re going to sit down with the FBI and go through any concerns that they have, and any legitimate concerns over sources and methods, we will redact.”