A new report from the Washington Post sent shock waves reverberating through the nation’s capital. The report alleges that President Trump’s son-in-law Jared Kushner proposed setting up a secret back-channel line of communication between the White House and Kremlin. Kushner also serves as a senior adviser to the president.
Appearing on MSNBC Friday evening, John McLaughlin, former Acting Director of the Central Intelligence Agency (CIA) was asked about the revelation in the Post article by host Lawrence O’Donnell:
“John McLaughlin, you worked in the CIA. You come across say an intercepted Russian communication which seem what would be the certainly CIA reaction to intercepting this communication from the Russian ambassador indicating that Jared Kushner wanted to set up this secret communication?”
“Well, Lawrence, if that’s what it was, the first reaction would be is this a prank? It would be kind of disbelief, because it’s not the sort of they think you would expect to happen in a normal transition. So oddly for me, I was thinking about it tonight. I see all of this through the eyes of an intelligence officer, of course. And it is simultaneously familiar and bizarre. Familiar in the sense that I know secret channels, used them all my life. Bizarre in the sense that it’s a proposed secret channel through the government that is probably the most active government in the world in carrying out espionage against the United States.”
Yes, espionage. The most trusted adviser in the White House may have engaged in espionage.
“So in that context, if you were to get this at the CIA, having read that and having known that, your first reaction would be could this be true? And then you would discover it is true and move on from there. I don’t want to overstate this because obviously there is a lot we don’t know — we don’t know the exact content of the conversation. We don’t know the objective that was a part of the conversation — those things we don’t know. But I can’t keep out of my mind the thought that, if an American intelligence officer had done anything like this, we’d consider it espionage.”
Now ask yourself a question: Do you believe for a moment that Trump knew nothing about Kushner’s plans to set up this back-channel line of communication? If you accept that Trump did know, then guess who else is guilty of espionage against the United States?
This article was originally published by the same author at LiberalAmerica.org