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Think Tank 1110am federal employee “leakers”

Feb 16, 2017|

Are federal employee “leakers” defending democracy or corroding it?  Are the gushers of secret information coming out of the Trump administration going to make us stronger or weaker? This hours guest: Matt Dallek - Assistant Professor of Political Management in the Graduate School of Political Management at George Washington University, Presidential historian Michael Rubin - Resident Scholar at the American Enterprise Institute, author of "Dancing with the Devil: The Perils of Engagement"

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Automatically Generated Transcript (may not be 100% accurate)

All right if you're a personal lives or two via think tank. I think we're dude playing a little bit differently than modes to brood were not a liberal conservative. We're not trying to garuda in the middle of the room. We're trying to present information from boats. And would you decide. And good physically kind of sound like a scientific meant that while we do is win I have an opinion of the Sunday. I'd say what the opinion is in the and we tried to do is prove none not approved on Bob Ward being reduced through war writes today. Because if we're call or Tex or whoever. Shows me I'm wrong. My intelligence or oats I get beverage can do so under. In intercede look at bullying power we do radio project or WTO. Opinion. Poll. And scientific broad but it covers like from from your report that a little bit taxes. And we ask your federal employees leaguers. Federal employee lead scorers depending democracy. Our ruling. Six to 7%. And abuse. Depending. And red state that surprised. Or what was happening and we would. It's node depending upon receipt recruiting and interest in who pull. Alone. Where reload you can't do you can argued that the league pitcher work here of one headline. Or leaker is the opening democracy here or routing is the bush Arab League from the White House. The work bureaucrat who want to go and buy the product that. There's Wall Street Journal today spy it's cheaper intelligent from Donald Trump. Because of league concerns. Decision to withhold information. Underscores deep ms. frost. We're between intelligence community. And troll. And so I've done brilliant praising god sent a minority leader Charles Schumer saying let me tell you. You'd take on the intelligence community. They have six ways from Sunday it getting back could you. So. Even for practical supposedly. Hard nosed businessmen and like trump. He's really busy but really dumb to do with. There's Schumer of no good these warning Al. Said we can't believe Christ. I mean anybody elected senator Ted Stevens. What the Justice Department did to him. In about I look at the UPI. During the presidential campaign. In the go to these extremely. Conservative. Bright board Nancy that it's eight Gordon didn't what that means. Bumps on general Linda who is the next target. And so I'm like her to yours openly. Or whatever would do water we'd group would try to go to people who believe in all the talk. Lucky enough to give professor amount and Alec professor of political management. George Washington University. President true historian and professor. Thank you so much Richard echo. So what's your take on all the does is it's. Something that's always in the end. Just saw it again to get used to it does is processed. Well. Look I think it depends on the kind of leaks that we are talking about you know because not all leaks are created equal. On some weeks you could argue so for example. The outing of Valerie Plame. As an undercover CIA age and a Covert. Agent. You could argue. Why is that damaging I mean that that is. You know she was undercover. Sure name was not exposed to be disclosed. And it lives. I'm. You could argue I think a reasonably said the settled lets us know in disclose not all that but but that's summit that. May have compromise sources and methods but that there are a lot of leaks where. National security. I don't think it has been compromised where the public. Has some right to know and where there are policy implications so just consider the current. But situation I mean. We have. Now information that. That Donald Trump that his campaign. Team so this must senior officials had continuous. High level contacts. With. Russian intelligence and government officials. That is a significant piece of information doesn't have. Doesn't compromise our national security the public knowing that if anything. It I think is major. But a source of investigation and the country deserves. I think I know more about. What was in those are conversations. Why are our intelligence wise FBI investigating them. And and I think that servers that democracy. And and correct me wrong. But I think Korea Senate Intelligence. Committee is trying to get frightened script. Of that conversation. In the white hell and says. There was there was nothing on toward. We let him go because he lied to the vice president and the president. If bench room shouldn't be as simple thing of revealing to try and skip to the committee and then it's over. Well so there are couple of complicating and a lot of complicated factors one is so you have an official general but when. Two before taking office before becoming the national security advisor. To president trump. During the transition had a conversation where the Russian ambassador. To the US and according to reports. Suggested. That they should sit tight that sanctions. Could be lifting sanctions could be on the table and discussed a policy. Now there's and act a law called the Logan act which. No one apparently had ever been prosecuted under a but it does exist which is no private citizen is allowed to. Negotiate. With a foreign adversaries species that kind of conflict. On you don't think about this what happens that the US is engaged in a war with another country and some prominent private citizen attempts to you so that the pac. Back channel to try to negotiate. Something I mean. I you know there are so. And then on top of it again you know what we know when systematically. And repeatedly lie. Right to the vice president of the United States to. The media today it to the country. That. He discussed sanctions and with. The Russian government so. You know there are multiple I think. Layers of problems and look I mean it was one of the top three or four I think loyalists who emerged that Donald Trump he was one of his closest advisors. The reality is there's no way president trump would have let him resign or fire and whatever happened without. Something egregious having happened and without this being a damaging stories so. You know this way is you know this was a really big deal and and it just is that started to. All right we we've got to take a break of those Clinton ticket Waterman and who will conduct. In case you need to sale at new tortured talking about. I Holden I heard on the number of dog chose yesterday. I'm more limited goal back I interviewed. Via toppled visual acuity. That says it's unbelievable that Clinton would decades of experience in the intelligence and military community. Sitting there would be drew his wife brand who call with the Russian ambassador. And didn't. Fully understood and that the imbalances drew boos being recorded. But I heard yesterday in a number of show who's the added is if that ever Kurds. The American intelligence. Officials. Or some boats to get all the line. And not regard the Americans. On skewed that true when we come back double. Our word think about towards three year and that kind of guy I don't think it's good to god through the league's. Come together of the federal bureaucracies. The White House that does porn done is that depending democracy. Rooting. But more and take a look a little bleak code pan out the records something. A new color replied. A home where you we interviewed a buried. Do I remember former administrations. Yesterday. And they said Jews they were very concerned about the Logan. That. What Palin did. He violated. And it was while leading. A law. And it could go to jail over it. And then England listening to the talk shows and television talk to lose yesterday. Heard a number of people saying why actually. The intelligence people. Dad recorded. VM back considered talking to win. They should've got on the phone as soon as they realize that Americans on the line. Rib med eloquent this professor of political management George Washington University. President through his storing a professor do you have any knowledge that it is that true. So I'm not an expert on and on civil legal requirements. Of intelligence operations but. I've never heard that before my own expenses that. The NSA for example national security they are not allowed to. And actually spied on Americans domestically by. As if they pick up call let's say between Paul manna for. And it senior Russian intelligence. Official who loses. In Russia or wherever is who they are monitoring. Armed that they actually have an obligation to stay on and record that call I mean for example what happens yes. You know somebody is. Giving an American is giving to a foreign intelligence. Official. By a crucial classified information. That is an an illegal act how would be intelligence operatives. Be able to track benefit have to hang up the call essentially. So arm I head I'd never heard that but there is that important distinction and the distinction with land is that. They were monitoring. Sort of routine traffic. From the Russian ambassador so they were you know tapping and that's what. And you do you also raised the point earlier yeah of course when you should have no one that is that you know is conversations with actually of Trump's campaign officials so. On. You know I think what it does is raise more questions. Right now that we have answers and these are important questions which is why you're central. Kind of proud mass unit it is that is leaguers to they defend democracy you're hurting the harm it com I think in in this instance. There are absolutely. This is this as a defensive democracy because. You know this is an important debate to have to simply kind of sweep this under the rock and the other thing is a reality of modern communications in modern media is. You know leaks happen right you know it's hot I mean there's no way that you're gonna conduct an investigation of a president or presidential campaign. Or a national security advisor. And it is not going to eventually. Leak out now again we still don't know specifics. That has not currently but we do you know at least a little bit now. Because of the leaks we've had. Professor. Every urea. Presidential. Historian. So when you read something this morning from Wall Street Journal bare wooden. Intelligence officials have in the past. Not told the president or members of congress about being in and outs of how big plus I've gathered Friday. But in the previous cases of language information which would hell. The decision was not motivated by concern. About a president's. Trust worthiness. Or discretion. Is is that true. Not technically accurate. You know typically is and he looked intelligence agencies and operatives are there to. Provide. Information. To the extent possible unbiased. But if permission to the policy makers. And so that day so that the policy makers including the president can't make the best most informed decisions possible. Having said that though when Richard Nixon was president. There was. There were times it was at least one moment when for example. Henry Kissinger and some other senior NASA security officials did not wanna. I'll wait the president because they they think that he was wrong. They don't wanna wait the president and inform him of an unfolding national security. Crisis and in this sense there was a level. I'd distrust of Nixon and not so much that he was going to let it leak information to the Russians but just his mental condition and his cup pass. After the two. Attack at. Act irrational and lucid way. So there has certainly been historically concerns about how. You know a president's capacity or ability to kind of handles sensitive by information or even make. Sensitive decisions and you know Woodrow Wilson was impair after the stroke in the public didn't. I know about that but but this is I think unprecedented at least as far as we know. That and and assuming these reports are true that intelligence. Officials. Are concerned that their very own president may not actually be trustworthy. Because there their ties to. The Russians that dictator Vladimir Putin's. In this case present terms ties are so substantial. That they don't know that he's going to. A safeguard that that information so that is that's pretty stunning. Again you know that's a Wall Street Journal report apple will see if that turns out to be the case by ticket it's. It it tells us but back to this article can even existed tell us about the gaps. Suspicion. That that exist now. The trop White House and and and frankly president Trump's ability. To conduct important national security functions of the presidency. Proved that observe appeal I can be and from one glance and learned form more than total board thank you so margin appreciated the drop in. I. Yeah you know this sketch very complicated but one important things the bush and intuitive and book about it. It's something good to on the Charles Schumer says. Senate Minority Leader. Bill won't try to get into in the next town power. But. Our opinion poll obscure federal employee Lee cores depending democracy recruiting. 5050 now depending 50%. Roading 50%. Interesting times we're living. Hole was drilled you know ever and Barbara Dickson now remember leagues but. Good rings seemed like archer. Coming out of the federal bureau emperor's new light how would you read maybe. Our president jaguar double double opinion poll of federal employee Lee colors depending democracy recruiting him that more thing about today now. Did you 4%. Of view. Say corroding but it was introducing a huge percentage. Said depending. Minutes and elaborate depending whether the Roland Edwards and end of that bright in the clip of that to four routes and road. A look at the headlines good re. Washington journal spies keep intelligent from Donald Trump on leaked concerns. Atlantic his cigar true links about the White House in Brooklyn bureaucrats want to undermine the president. We've got bright board. Sending general Lynn who's down who's the next target. And Bob pound battery interest and some truckers and a boy and Norton trolls rumors that quote. Let me tell you take on the intelligence computer via six ways from Sunday giving back at you. So even for a practical so broadly boardrooms as men. Usually don't do this so I didn't vote for trumpet roam back and models like qualities do we. What god has sent mine are leaders saying we can't owned this allegiance community. Yet ventures saying out there and as usual I turned to Michael Rubin. Resident scholar at the American enterprise institute and author of and singled doubled the rules of engagement like court welcomed aren't sure appreciated. Thanks for rhetoric RO two cultural role bullets here. Well you know it actually it's treasonous in criminal obviously except it would be on Donald Trump he's not my it is not much opportunity. But that's dead. That's not what prompted this isn't about. Whistle blowing this isn't about protecting democracy. What we saw with general land another man whose policy I disagree wit. Was not a whistle blower leaking and the issue that was illegal wants. Rather it was. Eighty. Then dead and we saw that as sound multiple leaks trying to feed the frenzy of the press. Because it's all Flynn did was talked to the Russian ambassador. I news flash. Bill Clinton did this. And the open Clinton's team did this as they were succeeding George HW bullets. George W. Bush did this as he was succeeding. Tom Bill Clinton President Obama. Had basically had a fifteen day in the interim between when he won the election. And win McKeon took office. Told possible spot that you can expect a different policies for mosques in away undermining George W Bush's policies. This is par for the course I may disagree with the policy but leaking Intel is no way to do. Good but it in a bigger. Lynn said something to the back page don't worry about it. We get an office of sanctions. And take them all and we're clones lead together. Hogan had designed to bio ads is that violated in the rule. Please note the Logan act says. That's private US citizens. Cannot negotiate. Pop on behalf of the United States government without the permission of the United States government with a foreign power to resolve a problem. Now it's never been to have to constitutionally. And it would be really tough case to make given. Slim would simply stating the policy in coming trumped administration again it's a policy that disagree without. I think we should be a lot tougher on Russia. That not. But ultimately. This doesn't necessarily raised raised the level what I see going on is that. The National Security Agency. Had intercepted the phone calls for the Russian ambassador. Slimmest pocket to Russian ambassador and when that happens the transcript was provided the FBI. Now either an essay. Or they FBI or some other member of the intelligence community number one acknowledged publicly to the media that phone call had taken place. And then secondly and later acknowledged the contents of that phone call but here's the thing. Garland the Russian ambassador shortly assumes that the United States is gonna try that happened to his phone and listen to a conversation. But what the Russian ambassador didn't know is that we had succeeded in doing it. The whole reason why I classification occurs is to protect sources and methods the fact of the matter is this week have a lot less to do with the win. And a lot more to do with exposing the fact that we it successfully hacked. The Russian embassy and that's the most sensitive intelligence out there that's what someone needs to go to jail. Or say it was big come arrived back thoughts comments Gibbs called Jews in general wanted somebody we agree true. Expert on the lie and what do you think are we important quarter. Blue belligerent and depending democracy. Are the road again doubled up. Are bringing her brood finger about the league's coming out of Washington and Dwight held for all of you blow. Embracing the question leagues depending on the block groups are you or rule being it. And and there's always it's just my opinion we go to experts from rule in north talking about once again we have Mike Ruben. Resident scholar American enterprise institute and author of dancing with the double the current rules of engagement. What if compliments will put a book about an. Basically what I am doing is looking at high profile episodes of US. Diplomacy. Win if rogue regimes this term that was point during the Clinton administration. To talk about enemies that really don't abide by the norms of diplomacy. And an effect on undoing as the lessons learned exercise what really socked me Garland. Is that. In the military every day our soldiers are sellers are pilots will do after action reports there's studied at the stakes in order to make themselves better. But believe it or not our diplomats had never done the same thing. For example after the North Korean diplomacy after the Iran diplomacy they never look at what they might not matter where they went wrong so that's what I was trying to do with. Getting your own talk about that aren't backed subject. Wall Street Journal today that liberal publication there's intelligent appears from seven the apps. Several inaugural presidents or members of congress about the in denial so Powell replied you're ready. But in previous cases from which information was withheld the decision it's worth more public. By concerned about the president's fourths worse than it's. Or discretion in particular. They're a little concerned about their their their contacts. Being revealed what would give outs there or what blend well. To this extent. Williams you know Garland when I worked in the Pentagon. The consumer intelligence. And so I would get intelligence reports from the Central Intelligence Agency and they would read like normal reports. Now if I had a question if I disagreed with the conclusion. I might ask where they got the information from how they came in its decision. But I would have to go through layers and layers of various clearances some of which I had some of which I didn't. In order to get a sense. If it was coming from specific source or not when president trump is receiving intelligence. Generally speaking he receive something called the out of the presidential daily brief which is likened newspaper the CIA writes just for the president. That isn't something that has code words of despised that this or that spies said that. So generally speaking what I worry about is that the president that the CIA might simply not be. Aren't giving the president full knowledge of what for example that you audience might be doing because they fear. That the president would come to a decision on policy which the intelligence community would disagree with now we've seen this in the past. You may remember do you remember the yellow rain episode. OK I mean many of your listeners may not but touring the late 1970s. You had a situation where. Sweet it's sweet it's hard penis journalists. Saw planes Soviet planes in southeast Asia flying over dropping canisters which would blow up the treetop level and the yellow cloud would come now. Now we took the CIA to book the interviews they took tissue samples. And they determined initially in assists ports the end of the Carter administration. That the Soviets were violating biological weapons conventions. However when Ronald Reagan got elected dated one. There be proof that the Soviets were violating this because the CIA. And the State Department wanted to pursue. Arms control negotiations to follow up talks. And so the intelligence is rheostat and the official conclusion was watching chemical weapons it was just a coincidence. That it was occurring over battle fields in which airplanes flying overhead. It was really be species mixed with pollen. And that was the official interpretation into regular out of office. When the Soviet submitted yet they had violated the biological weapons convention that's the most prominent case. But you know the CIA often that mixes around politics. And so will we hear the Democrats say this week or the Republicans say. We know there's a real problem. Oh yeah. Didn't got a good to back again and you have a lot to the debate thank you withdraw and have a great day. And as you know when I was chills watching. Box and and promptly and who have the beleaguered. We reduce the orders for drew encryption took thwart trawl. Employees would turn to signal. In all their income neutral forms of communications. Through expressed their descent. Goalless scrutiny network across the agency people. Who raised red flags have prone appointees. Do anything harmful. Seven million dollar doesn't bode foreign. I'm nod for a 100 stop these tours and scares me. And I'm I'm I'm telling those behind the scenes stuff up put you up. It abroad as Watergate to reveal what Nixon did. Still a little bit more concerned what do you think WW hoped think tank.