MotorMouth of the Oval Office

On Sirius this afternoon, driving back from the jail, CNN's host and guests were practically hyper-ventilating over the latest report in the Washington Post that Trump leaked information about ISIS to Russia that was so sensitive the U.S. had not even shared it with its allies.

CNN said the White House put out a denial that didn't address the substance of the WaPO report, but instead denied things that weren't alleged. There was some doubt expressed as to whether a statement the White House released in Tillerson's name even knew about it before hand, as none of the high up officials in the State Dept. that CNN reporters talked to seemed to know about it in advance. [More...]

I listened for 30 minutes and couldn't figure out what it was Trump was supposed to have said other than maybe laptops and ISIS attacks. The country whose intelligence agent had provided the info to the U.S. was not being identified, but CNN's guests thought anyone who regularly covers intelligence matters could figure it out. i\

Whatever Trump said, all the CNN guests agreed it wouldn't be a crime. Just stupid and dangerous, because it could jeopardize other countries sharing info with the U.S. in the future, and, in the words of one "terror expert" on CNN, it could result in ISIS accelerating a plan in the works.

From the Washington Post:

Trump has repeatedly gone off-script in his dealings with high-ranking foreign officials, most notably in his contentious introductory conversation with the Australian prime minister earlier this year. He has also faced criticism for seemingly lax attention to security at his Florida retreat, Mar-a-Lago, where he appeared to field preliminary reports of a North Korea missile launch in full view of casual diners.

Trump's limited attention span also concerns intelligence officials:

U.S. officials said that the National Security Council continues to prepare multi-page briefings for Trump to guide him through conversations with foreign leaders, but that he has insisted that the guidance be distilled to a single page of bullet points — and often ignores those.

All the CNN guests said this is so much more important than the James Comey firing and the Russia investigation into elections. I'll have to read more about it, but that sounds like a Republican talking point to me.

So which aides were with Trump when he met with the Russia Ambassador last week?

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    according to WAPO (5.00 / 1) (#3)
    by ding7777 on Mon May 15, 2017 at 09:25:19 PM EST
    the report states clearly only that Trump discussed an Islamic State plot and the city where the plot was detected
    Officials worried that this information could lead to the discovery of the methods and sources involved, but it didn't say Trump discussed them.

    My understandings (5.00 / 2) (#7)
    by BackFromOhio on Tue May 16, 2017 at 12:01:18 AM EST
    he leaked classified info thereby declassifying it, but US did not have approval of the country that provided the info to do so. Evidently there were many mmore details that WaPo and WSJ held back in order not to compound the error.

    Query whether any international law was broken?

    This is scary to me given that Russia and US have different positions on the mideast  

    Let us never again hear about HRC's handling of confidential info.

    This is analogous to the comparison of impeaching Bill Clinton for lying about a tryst and the Republican's resistance to impeaching Orange Julius for multiple serious causes. Emoluments clause anyone?

    Simply inconceivable....

    J. Turley just said (none / 0) (#10)
    by CaptHowdy on Tue May 16, 2017 at 08:19:25 AM EST
    if McMaster repeats the lies he told the press yesterday to congress it would be an indictable federal offense.

    even if he is not (none / 0) (#11)
    by CaptHowdy on Tue May 16, 2017 at 08:37:44 AM EST
    under oath.

    wonder how willing he will be to do that after just being totally undercut by president bozos tweets this morning.


    For McMaster it isn't lies (none / 0) (#19)
    by Militarytracy on Tue May 16, 2017 at 09:50:53 AM EST
    It's military law. The President instantly declassifies whatever he speaks. He is commander in chief. McMaster cannot question this either. That for him is illegal. He is not a civilian you guys.

    Mattis can question what happened, Kelly can too, HR McMaster cannot question what happened. Not today.


    then there is the BS (5.00 / 1) (#65)
    by CaptHowdy on Tue May 16, 2017 at 03:44:48 PM EST
    i just saw him shoveling about how the real problem is "leaks"

    he is a mouth piece and has zero credibility.


    That's a soldier (none / 0) (#71)
    by Militarytracy on Wed May 17, 2017 at 11:48:39 AM EST
    He does not have comprehension of free speech or even what it's used for. He signed his rights away for that long ago, and then as he was promoted he was given back some rights to speak his mind.

    And this all worked when you have an ethical President with reverent power. All the BS works.

    But right now my husband lays on the couch holding his own head in his hands. His head hurts, and he mumbles stuff about brainwashed....not making this up. It's really happening in my own home nightly :)

    Some are rolling around on their sofas mumbling, others are shouting nonsense at the air. We r so phucked


    then he should not (none / 0) (#64)
    by CaptHowdy on Tue May 16, 2017 at 03:43:20 PM EST
    have the job he has

    Nope, he should not be the NSA (none / 0) (#72)
    by Militarytracy on Wed May 17, 2017 at 11:50:45 AM EST
    Who should be, who can be? Who will even take that effing job right now?

    HEADS UP - STORY CHANGE (5.00 / 4) (#8)
    by CaptHowdy on Tue May 16, 2017 at 08:16:45 AM EST
    its just went from

    "he didnt do it"


    "i had the right to do it"

    As President I wanted to share with Russia (at an openly scheduled W.H. meeting) which I have the absolute right to do, facts pertaining....

    "If the President does it, (5.00 / 2) (#20)
    by MKS on Tue May 16, 2017 at 10:04:27 AM EST
    it is not illegal."

    Where have we heard that before?

    Maybe we should ask Henry Kissinger......


    And we are so far beyond (none / 0) (#22)
    by Militarytracy on Tue May 16, 2017 at 10:20:26 AM EST
    That horror

    We are in new compromised territory thanks to Murika


    Yup, and that's what McMaster was saying (none / 0) (#16)
    by Militarytracy on Tue May 16, 2017 at 09:41:31 AM EST
    The President can instantly declassified anything. My husband can repeat that in his sleep. Trump did nothing wrong!!

    that is not at all (none / 0) (#66)
    by CaptHowdy on Tue May 16, 2017 at 03:51:19 PM EST
    what he said.  

    That's what he meant though Captain (none / 0) (#73)
    by Militarytracy on Wed May 17, 2017 at 11:57:28 AM EST
    Without spelling it out...explaining it to us. He's a General, he hasn't had to explain anything to the grunts in years and years. That's what Captains do. That's not his job:) He just tells people how it is, and that's how it is for those people...until lately. All these peasant civilians.

    Israel is the ally whose intel Trump (5.00 / 2) (#42)
    by caseyOR on Tue May 16, 2017 at 12:57:15 PM EST
    gave to the Russians, according to The NY Times. Interesting given that the Obama administration warned Israel that any intel the Israelis shared with the Trump administration Trump could give to the Russians.

    It seems Trump (5.00 / 1) (#47)
    by Ga6thDem on Tue May 16, 2017 at 01:43:48 PM EST
    put a Mossad agent in danger if s/he is still alive. Some on the IC are leaking that the whole situation is a lot worse than has been reported. I guess we shall see.

    Yup (5.00 / 1) (#53)
    by Militarytracy on Tue May 16, 2017 at 01:57:43 PM EST
    What a phuckphace

    A whole bunch of people will be executed now too

    Phuckphace phuckphace phuckphace

    He's a great killer now too...phuckphace


    AND the White House is seeking (none / 0) (#56)
    by Militarytracy on Tue May 16, 2017 at 02:02:09 PM EST
    Approval from IC to share more of the particulars. They believe if people like me know more details, that I will calm down, nothing to see here....while sources and NOT sources are being murdered and this stream of intel has been destroyed.  Phuuuuuuckphace!

    OMG (none / 0) (#57)
    by Militarytracy on Tue May 16, 2017 at 02:04:49 PM EST
    All he said was this was from a spy and a spy recruiter.

    So it's all okay. Even though the press has agreed to not report on any of this since MARCH!!!!

    Because they were told this would place lives at risk.


    Wow (none / 0) (#46)
    by MKS on Tue May 16, 2017 at 01:26:42 PM EST
    Got a link for the Obama warning?

    Here you go: (5.00 / 1) (#54)
    by Donald from Hawaii on Tue May 16, 2017 at 01:59:34 PM EST
    The Telegraph | January 13, 2017
    U.S. spies 'warned Israel to not share intelligence with Trump - "US spies warned their Israeli counterparts that Russia may have "levers of pressure" over Donald Trump and told them to be careful about sharing intelligence with the White House in case it was passed on to the Kremlin, according to Israeli media reports."

    Note the date of the article.


    I figured (none / 0) (#52)
    by Militarytracy on Tue May 16, 2017 at 01:56:04 PM EST
    I need tea bags and cucumbers on my eyes. They are tired. They don't want to look anymore.

    Admiral Robert Haward, (5.00 / 1) (#60)
    by KeysDan on Tue May 16, 2017 at 02:30:18 PM EST
    turned down the national security offer, saying the job was a "sh*t sandwich."  Mattis (Mad Dog) and McMaster (Good Doggie), were the supposed adults in the administration.  We are down to Mattis.

    Sorry (5.00 / 2) (#61)
    by Yman on Tue May 16, 2017 at 02:33:36 PM EST
    I never suggested reporters have made (or should make) unqualified statements about Trump's leaking of classified information.  Just the opposite is true.  As responsible, serious journalists with editors and journalistic standards to follow, they should (and do) qualify their statements.  

    This POTUS, OTOH, has zero credibility and lies on a daily basis.  His sycophantic supporters couldn't care less about honesty or the truth, so they'll support him anyway, even when they parrothis lies (like this one, or last week when you said he fired Comey because of the email investigation).  More importantly, you have claimed that the WH made an unqualified denial of these reports.  Which, of course ...

    ... is one more lie.

    I just finished watching a supposedly (1.50 / 2) (#45)
    by jimakaPPJ on Tue May 16, 2017 at 01:17:49 PM EST
    ex-CIA analyst blather on in a Fox interview...

    She took up about 5 minutes and she didn't say anything that wasn't qualified by the words


    "may have"

    "could be."

    Can someone please show me some statements by the press that aren't "qualified" in some manner?

    Sure (none / 0) (#48)
    by Yman on Tue May 16, 2017 at 01:44:55 PM EST
    Right after you show me a "denial" from the WH (of the actual allegations) that isn't "qualified" in some manner.

    ... the constraints of those laws, rules and regulations which govern national security issues, meaning that she cannot publicly discuss in any specifics or detail those matters deemed classified. Further, she's likely providing an observer's analysis, because she was obviously not a direct party to the incident in question and cannot speak first-hand as to what exactly happened. Therefore, she must speak in generalities and use metaphors and qualifiers.

    This has become so Byzantine (none / 0) (#1)
    by CaptHowdy on Mon May 15, 2017 at 09:17:48 PM EST
    One wonders if maybe the Russians leaked it.  There was Russian press there.

    I agree with the comparison to Comey.  This is actually frightening.

    Code word information (none / 0) (#2)
    by CaptHowdy on Mon May 15, 2017 at 09:21:51 PM EST
    New term for me.  
    It is above top secret

    Wiki (none / 0) (#5)
    by CaptHowdy on Mon May 15, 2017 at 09:27:12 PM EST
    Code Word classifications    Edit
    Top Secret is the highest level of classification. However some information is compartmentalized by adding a code word so that only those who have been cleared for each code word can see it. This information is also known as "Sensitive Compartmented Information" (SCI). A document marked SECRET (CODE WORD) could only be viewed by a person with a secret or top secret clearance and that specific code word clearance. Each code word deals with a different kind of information. The CIA administers code word clearances.[16]

    maddow (none / 0) (#14)
    by Coral on Tue May 16, 2017 at 09:25:21 AM EST
    Maddow's show last night explained the entire event very well. Interview with WaPo reporter who broke story. I have begun listening to show by audio podcast every morning. She's been doing heroic job of reporting in the last week or so.

    Rachel can be annoying (none / 0) (#21)
    by MKS on Tue May 16, 2017 at 10:06:10 AM EST
    especially with her long intros on some arcane and seemingly irrelevant fact before she connects it to something more pertinent.

    But she is crackerjack smart and she really gets details right.


    I had a hard time listening (none / 0) (#69)
    by Lora on Tue May 16, 2017 at 04:17:07 PM EST
    to Rachel Maddow until the last few weeks.  The news she is reporting on far outweighs her annoying habits and voice.

    Some of her repetition may be filler, I suspect.

    I forgive any and all of her less-than-perfection.



    Just think of her intros... (none / 0) (#75)
    by unitron on Sat May 20, 2017 at 03:33:58 AM EST
    ...as the opening chapter of a James Michener book.

    yes (none / 0) (#67)
    by CaptHowdy on Tue May 16, 2017 at 03:55:31 PM EST
    i have been following her closely as well.  that said, i agree with MKS.  i rarely if ever watch commercial tv in real time.  god love the DVR.

    i usually skip the first 10 minutes.  the "wind up" is often intolerable.

    another thing she does that i find annoying is say the same thing 12 times. in various ways.   like she is talking to a fifth grader.  but i make allowances for ..... the public.

    all in all she is a bit of a national treasure.


    If Trump's (none / 0) (#9)
    by KeysDan on Tue May 16, 2017 at 08:18:32 AM EST
    denials are false, he will be in the same place Flynn was--a position of potential blackmail. The Russians know the real story.

     But, the reports are very likely to be true, and, once again, we can wait for a new cover story today, as the ramifications set in.  And, by sending General McMaster out to spin the story, national security is no longer sustained, but is stained.


    see below (none / 0) (#12)
    by CaptHowdy on Tue May 16, 2017 at 08:38:35 AM EST
    There are only two (plausible) ... (none / 0) (#13)
    by Yman on Tue May 16, 2017 at 09:09:40 AM EST
    ... explanations for why Trump would do this, and neither are good:

    1.  He's clueless (is water wet?) and didn't realize the consequences.

    2.  He knew what he was doing and, despite all the attending focused on his ties to Russia, did it anyway.  This is becoming more believable every day.  What do they have on him?

    3.  He's playing 3-dimensional chess and had a long term strategy.  This is what he's trying to sell.  The guy who can't okay checkers.

    Apologies for linking to Cillizza.

    My theory is dementia (5.00 / 1) (#15)
    by Coral on Tue May 16, 2017 at 09:30:06 AM EST
    which is progressing fairly rapidly this year, combined with an already difficult personality (extreme narcissism, ADHD) and background as a consummate con-artist.

    Unless the GOP leadership is willing to confront this situation directly and responsibly, we are in great danger.


    I think he has always had a severe personality (5.00 / 2) (#18)
    by Militarytracy on Tue May 16, 2017 at 09:47:27 AM EST
    Pathology and now also some dementia.

    The GOP (none / 0) (#63)
    by Lora on Tue May 16, 2017 at 03:36:24 PM EST
    still hopes to gain something, somehow, for the party.  They will only turn on Trump if the losses outweigh any potential gains.  It seems as though the tide is finally turning, though.  A few more Repub politicians are beginning to publicly shake their heads and look serious and a little shocked at Trump's antics. The momentum is gathering.

    McConnell (none / 0) (#68)
    by Ga6thDem on Tue May 16, 2017 at 04:14:08 PM EST
    basically said he is okay with Trump spewing intel to the Russians as long as their agenda of repealing Obamacare and tax cuts for millionaires goes forward.

    that is a charitable view (none / 0) (#70)
    by CaptHowdy on Tue May 16, 2017 at 04:18:40 PM EST
    but i suspect you have not, as i have, followed this a$$ clown since the 80s.  perhaps its a form of dementia but it is not age related.  he is exactly what he has alays been.

    He has no personality core (5.00 / 2) (#17)
    by Militarytracy on Tue May 16, 2017 at 09:46:27 AM EST
    He doesn't work like you and I do. He is simply insecure, and there were no consequences that he remembers from yesterday that concern him.

    He lives for flattery. That gets him to the next second. He will do whatever he believes will get him admiration and flattery no matter who is before him.

    He has no personality base.

    I know there is a technical term, but I'm too stunned to look it up today.


    McMaster to hold press conference (none / 0) (#23)
    by Yman on Tue May 16, 2017 at 10:40:04 AM EST
    ... before noon today.  He was supposed to have a joint conference with Spicey, but I guess it's hard to appear credible if you do that, so he's holding a separate conference.  Supposed to be about Trump's overseas trip, but all the questions will be about Trump's disclosure of classified info to the Russians.  Odds that he doesn't take any questions just like yesterday?  Or sticks with the same, non-denial "denial".  Reporters won't let him get away with that again.

    I think Spicer refused (none / 0) (#24)
    by Militarytracy on Tue May 16, 2017 at 10:48:39 AM EST
    I just finally turned the news on. I couldn't until now.

    Things to remember. McMaster can be ordered to do this. Nobody else can be ordered to do it in the fashion that McMaster can.

    McMaster does not get to espoused his own opinion. He is not a civilian!

    We all hoped that certain individuals would hold back erosion of the democracy. I demanded my husband leave military service after Abu Ghraib. He told me if all the decent soldiers leave nobody is there to hold the line :( He was right.


    Spicer there too (none / 0) (#27)
    by Militarytracy on Tue May 16, 2017 at 10:53:57 AM EST
    McMaster trying to get away after giving the Presidential itinerary

    And McMaster takes the podium out of uniform? (none / 0) (#25)
    by Militarytracy on Tue May 16, 2017 at 10:49:36 AM EST
    He is still active duty. How does this work?

    Isn't there (none / 0) (#26)
    by Ga6thDem on Tue May 16, 2017 at 10:53:44 AM EST
    some difference between what you say and do in uniform versus out of uniform?

    You can attend political events (5.00 / 1) (#28)
    by Militarytracy on Tue May 16, 2017 at 10:54:37 AM EST
    Out of uniform.

    Here we go (none / 0) (#29)
    by Militarytracy on Tue May 16, 2017 at 10:57:04 AM EST
    And Trump will destroy McMaster's career. Oh well, it is what it is. He is choosing his own words and passion right now. He will probably go down in infamy too.

    Oh My God (none / 0) (#30)
    by Militarytracy on Tue May 16, 2017 at 10:59:05 AM EST
    As Russia phucks us over slowly soo hard, McMaster has destroyed himself

    That's scary. (none / 0) (#32)
    by Ga6thDem on Tue May 16, 2017 at 11:07:35 AM EST
    The last few people we have to rely on are destroying themselves.

    I always have wondered why McMaster has had (none / 0) (#33)
    by Militarytracy on Tue May 16, 2017 at 11:16:47 AM EST
    Difficulties being promoted. Guess he is only "book smart". I knew he was very abrasive, but assumed he understood nuance and was a good communicator. He is not

    And only possesses soldier ethics, cannot espouse the reality outside of military mindset. Chose to focus on leaks? So be it. It is what it is


    Yep (none / 0) (#34)
    by Yman on Tue May 16, 2017 at 11:46:32 AM EST
    Used the phrase "wholely appropriate"  none times to describe the disclosure of the information.

    Okay.  If it was "wholely appropriate," then tell us specifically what was said.  Release the unedited transcript and confirm whether any calls were placed to the CIA, etc. to do damage control a was reported.  Otherwise, it's just unsupported,  BS spin.


    Shorter (5.00 / 2) (#37)
    by FlJoe on Tue May 16, 2017 at 12:09:54 PM EST
    McMasters "I can tell you what he said is appropriate, but I can't tell you what he said because it's.........classified.

    Nice suit though (none / 0) (#40)
    by Militarytracy on Tue May 16, 2017 at 12:21:12 PM EST
    Nice and empty

    The (5.00 / 1) (#62)
    by FlJoe on Tue May 16, 2017 at 03:08:06 PM EST
    money quote
    He also would not confirm or deny whether the information Trump shared with the Russian diplomats was classified, saying, "I will not be the one to confirm that information that could jeopardize our security."

    A simple no jeopardizes nothing, you do the math.


    And McMaster runs away (none / 0) (#31)
    by Militarytracy on Tue May 16, 2017 at 11:04:54 AM EST
    After saying too much

    What is it about Trump ... (5.00 / 1) (#36)
    by Donald from Hawaii on Tue May 16, 2017 at 12:06:03 PM EST
    ... that causes otherwise honorable career men like Gen. H.R. McMaster and Rod Rosenstein to willingly and unilaterally undermine and trash their own once-impeccable professional reputations so thoroughly over the course of only one week's time?

    He's honorable Donald (5.00 / 1) (#38)
    by Militarytracy on Tue May 16, 2017 at 12:13:51 PM EST
    But the scope that honor was subjected to has been very compartmentalized. A whole career, an entire work lifetime, his honor was only applicable to a very restricted sphere of scrutiny and understanding.

    He's a jarhead. An honorable jarhead :)

    He's no Powell. He's no Clark. He can't even grasp what that entails or why. He's not an anomaly either :)

    It would appear that Trump has just thrown the entire issue of NationAL Security at McMaster too. And he caught it. Such power.

    And it's his while he has it. When he no longer has it, he's over.


    So, like Trump, McMaster (none / 0) (#41)
    by Towanda on Tue May 16, 2017 at 12:48:46 PM EST
    lacks integrative complexity.

    An interesting term, explicated in reportage that I read a few days ago (so I don't have the link) worth looking up.  

    Well, with Trump, there also is narcissistic personality disorder, senile dementia, and who knows what else in that toxic mess of a mind.


    Yup, and no social skills, never had to develop (5.00 / 1) (#44)
    by Militarytracy on Tue May 16, 2017 at 01:14:28 PM EST
    Them. No common sense. Always had a book of rules to live by.

    Military officers are used to having complete control of the message with those they address too. It appears to never have occurred to him that the answers would create more free press/democracy questions.

    I sent my husband a text about him taking the podium out of uniform and my husband said if the NSA is active duty he is not supposed to present in uniform.

    McMaster should have never taken the podium. Too late though.

    Notice who never takes the podium. Steve Bannon.


    Agreed, MT. Gen. McMaster's honor ... (none / 0) (#49)
    by Donald from Hawaii on Tue May 16, 2017 at 01:47:26 PM EST
    ... is both limited in its scope and now thoroughly compromised, thanks in no small part to his disgraceful public performances last night and this morning. He has willfully conflated his respective duties to the president and to the country as one and the same, and has further done so at the precise moment when the two missions are divergent and incompatible.

    At this point in time, and speaking for myself only, I must now view McMaster as nothing more than an extension of the existential threat posed to us by his boss, whose own behavior has been far more reflective of a self-serving robber baron or mafioso, than that of a president and commander-in-chief.

    Because a truly honorable man, "jarhead" or otherwise, would not have seen Trump this week as McMaster did and still said, "L'etat, c'est vous." Rather, he would have resigned his office, effective immediately -- and his commission, too, if necessary.



    Career military have a hard time refusing (none / 0) (#74)
    by Militarytracy on Wed May 17, 2017 at 11:46:29 PM EST
    A President. Someone evolved would do it instantly, but the military discourages that sort of mental and emotional evolution.

    That's why my husband is having these headaches. The BS as CaptHowdy pointed out only works when we have an ethical President. And Obama was, he covered that need VERY VERY well. He was never compromised, there were conspiracy theorists but he was stunningly free of all that too. The man just didn't do anything questionable. You might be ticked at him, but he always squared everything with ethics.

    Our military had 8 yrs of complete functionality from their commander. They didn't get that from W. They had developed some calluses. They don't have any anymore. McMaster completed his career maturity without really being challenged with a dysfunctional commander in chief.

    I heard some bitching about Obama. Some people attempted to conjure up some dysfunctionality on Obama's part by trying to say he didn't pay them enough attention, didn't respect them enough...whatever. We have real dysfunction now and a military leadership no longer schooled and up to date mentally or emotionally how to deal with a lunatic President.

    I will also say that I was pretty sure McMaster was part of a study and rewriting of some Army doctrine that was arguing that a President could not take us to war without a new AUMF. He and Perkins were part of this when a Clinton presidency looked certain. After Trump was elected though guess what, that whole conference they had and suggestions from the TRADOC generals has been scrubbed. I was at first comforted that McMaster was involved in that but now it looks like these bastards were only interested in curtailing executive power when that executive was going to be Hillary Clinton. Obama should have fired them all, but who knew their "ethics" were situational. He probably applauded their conference. In the rear view though it was nothing greater than misogyny. As long as the President is insane and possesses a dick he gets anything he wants. He is an object of worship.

    Just eff these guys!


    Probably because he throws (none / 0) (#39)
    by Militarytracy on Tue May 16, 2017 at 12:18:49 PM EST
    All the internal mechanisms at them with no checks or balances from pesky advisors. So much power, so few analysts :) Just give Trump the results he wants and power is yours.

    It appears Trump has no remorse (5.00 / 4) (#43)
    by fishcamp on Tue May 16, 2017 at 01:02:46 PM EST
    for his actions, which is the most important  trait of a sociopath.