Published: Fri, February 01, 2019
Global Media | By Garry Long

Trump slams USA intelligence chiefs as 'passive and naive' on Iran

Trump slams USA intelligence chiefs as 'passive and naive' on Iran

In scathing tweets, the US President outlined the scale of the risk still posed by Tehran's nuclear ambitions and aggressive policies in the region.

"Perhaps Intelligence should go back to school", Trump said on Twitter.

But Trump, in a string of Twitter comments, assailed them for their Iran views, calling them "extremely passive and naive when it comes to the dangers of Iran".

Trump insisted Wednesday on Twitter that the US relationship with North Korea "is the best it has ever been". The militant group, he said, was "running rampant" when he became president, but there's since been "tremendous progress ... especially over the last five weeks".

Mr Trump a year ago pulled out of an global nuclear deal with Iran put in place under his Democratic predecessor, Barack Obama, and reimposed sanctions on Tehran.

Several national security officials told CNN that while they don't like the President's latest attacks on the intelligence community, they're not paying much notice.

King said his concern is it's one thing for the intelligence committee to know that this is happening but if they don't inform the people who are being victimized, who are being attacked. he thinks that really blunts the effectiveness of the availability of the intelligence.

He broke with decades of USA policy when he agreed to meet with North Korean leader Kim Jong Un last June and has planned a second summit in February.

Director of U.S. National Intelligence Dan Coats also said that Tehran continued to comply with the deal even after the U.S. withdrawal from it.

Trump defended his decision to withdraw about 2,000 U.S. troops from Syria on grounds that IS no longer poses a threat, saying "we've beaten them".

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A few Republicans also joined Democrats on Wednesday to reintroduce a war powers resolution, which passed the Senate but not the House in December in the face of Trump's opposition, seeking to end any US involvement in Yemen's civil war.

Trump also cautiously suggested the end of the 18-year USA military involvement in Afghanistan that was started in response to al-Qaida's September 11, 2001, terrorist attacks on the US that killed almost 3,000 people.

The assessment was presented during a Senate Intelligence Committee hearing on Tuesday by the National Intelligence Director Dan Coats and the Central Intelligence Agency Director Gina Haspel.

"On many of these issues Trump is right... no matter what the intelligence is, USA war in Syria is going to make the problem worse; escalation in North Korea is going to make the problem worse".

Both countries have sophisticated "cyber espionage" capabilities, which they may try to use to influence the 2020 USA presidential election. Trump has ordered a partial pullback of US forces this year, although no firm plan is in place.

The bill says. if the administration decides to reduce the number of US troops to below 22-thousand, . the secretary of defense must report to both the House and the Senate the expected impact on North Korea, .as well as the expected military and economic impacts on usa relations with both South Korea and Japan.

Trump touted the organization's defeat when announcing the withdrawal of US forces from Syria last month, but has since walked back the claim to address only the near-complete loss of territory it once controlled.

The US intelligence officials told the Senate Intelligence Committee that Iran was not developing nuclear weapons in violation of agreement. The threat assessment - an annual report to Congress that ranks threats to American national security from around the world - provides the public with an unclassified and up-to-date summary of the most pressing national security threats to the US.

In Singapore, Mr Trump and Mr Kim signed an agreement pledging to "work toward complete denuclearisation" - but there was no agreed pathway and little progress has been made since then on the issue.

On political interference, the written assessment added that intelligence analysts expect American adversaries "to refine their capabilities and add new tactics as they learn from each other's experiences, suggesting the threat landscape could look very different in 2020 and future elections".

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