William McRaven, commander of the US Navy SEAL raid that killed Osama bin Laden, condemned President Donald Trump on Thursday for revoking the security clearance of former Central Intelligence Agency chief John Brennan and asked that his be withdrawn as well.
He has previously described as "treasonous" the joint press conference Mr Trump held with Russian leader Vladimir Putin in Finland last month.
As IJR reported, Trump first threatened to revoke the security clearances of Brennan and other Obama-era officials on July 23.
"I don't trust many of those people on that list", Trump said Wednesday.
But Trump, in an interview with the Wall Street Journal, connected Brennan and other intelligence officials with Mueller's probe. "I think they're not good people".
In an interview with the Wall Street Journal, Trump admitted his decision on Brennan's clearance was linked to the ongoing Russian Federation probe.
"Security clearances for those who still have them may be revoked, and those who have already lost their security clearance may not be able to have it reinstated", White House spokeswoman Sarah Sanders told reporters, reading a statement in the president's name.
Sanders says the security clearances of other current and formers officials are also "under review". Bottom row from left are former FBI Deputy Assistant Director Peter Strzok, former Deputy Attorney General Sally Yates and former National Intelligence Director James Clapper. U.S. Representative Joaquin Castro said Mueller should also investigate the issue now that Trump has tied it to the Russian Federation probe.
At least two of the former officials, Comey and McCabe, do not now have security clearances, and none of the eight receive intelligence briefings.
In the White House's own announcement of his security revocation, press secretary Sarah Sanders accused Brennan of demonstrating "erratic behavior" and specifically cited testimony Brennan gave to Congress past year in denying that the so-called Steele dossier was a factor in the intelligence community's ultimate conclusion regarding Russia's interference in the 2016 election. "So, this is a risky precedent to set".
Several Republicans also weighed in, with Sen.
"It feels very much like a banana republic kind of thing", Corker said.
Mr Brennan said the move by Mr Trump was "designed to send a message to others. that if you dare to speak out against Mr Trump there are way that he can try to hit back at you". "I really don't. And I don't think he's qualified to have one", Kennedy said, calling Brennan a "butthead".
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