John Brennan had no business retaining his security clearance

· August 16, 2018  
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John Brennan & President Obama
Pete Souza | Obama White House

On Wednesday, the White House announced that President Trump was revoking former CIA Director John Brennan’s security clearance.

While most former intelligence chiefs do not become overly political after leaving an administration, Brennan has broken with past precedent. He has become a high-profile public figure and a far-left TV personality, proudly fashioning himself as a leader of the anti-Trump resistance.

Brennan’s gross departure from the operative norms of former intelligence leaders is hardly the only reason for why President Trump was entirely justified in pulling his clearance. The Obama CIA chief has a long history of aligning with anti-American ideologies and abusing the power of his office to violate the rights of American citizens.

John Brennan’s extremist ideology

John Brennan should never have been allowed to come near the CIA headquarters, let alone command America’s premier intelligence agency, given his trouble differentiating the bad guys from the good guys.

His sketchy track record begins with his infamous vote for the Moscow-controlled Communist Party USA candidate Gus Hall in the 1976 presidential election. Historical records show that Hall was completely owned and financed by the Soviet Union.

“In fact, if one studies Brennan’s admission that he voted for Gus Hall, it looks like he also suggested that he might have been a member of the Communist Party in 1980. Yes, a formal member,” historian Paul Kengor wrote of Brennan in March. “Once upon a time in pre-Obama America, the possibility of CPUSA membership would have been a disqualifying factor to run the CIA.”

During his early days working inside the intelligence community, Brennan was stationed in the Middle East, where it appears he adopted the extremist viewpoints and propaganda being articulated by the fundamentalists of his host nations.

In 2010, he described “Al-Quds” (the Islamic supremacist name for Jerusalem) as his favorite city. That same year, in a speech at a D.C. think tank, he claimed the Islamic warfare concept of jihad as a “legitimate tenet of Islam.” Brennan demanded that American analysts and policymakers stop describing U.S. enemies as “jihadists” or “Islamists”

He continued:

“Nor do we describe our enemy as ‘jihadists’ or ‘Islamists’ because jihad is a holy struggle, a legitimate tenet of Islam, meaning to purify oneself or one’s community, and there is nothing holy or legitimate or Islamic about murdering innocent men, women and children.”

That same year, Brennan touted a “moderate” Hezbollah, the Shiite terrorist group that is subservient to the Iranian regime and has sworn to annihilate the state of Israel.

Brennan’s illegal activities

In 2014, Brennan admitted to using the CIA to spy on Senate Intelligence Committee staffers. Prior to his admission, Brennan lied repeatedly, denying charges that he authorized the CIA to engage in surveillance of U.S. citizens on American soil.

During the 2016 election campaign, Brennan was reportedly the point man for a sophisticated, unprecedented espionage campaign against then-candidate Trump. There is a plethora of evidence that he was an essential component, if not the chief operative, of what some have referred to as “Spygate,” or the past administration’s surveillance operations against Donald Trump.

Brennan also helped draft a controversial 2016 U.S. intelligence community assessment that made several claims about Russia’s supposed widespread interference in the 2016 election. That intelligence assessment reportedly relied on the Trump-Russia dossier, which was drafted by a foreign spy and paid for by Hillary Clinton and the Democratic National Committee.

Brennan’s current behavior

Fast-forward to today, and the former CIA director continues his unhinged rants. All of his tweets are directed at the president of the United States.

The former CIA director, who is now an NBC on-air personality, has on several occasions accused the president of committing treason. He also claims President Trump is subservient to Russian President Vladimir Putin, even though the evidence shows us that the current president’s record on Russia is much more hawkish than that of President Barack Obama’s.

Brennan’s obsession with undermining the authority of the duly elected president made him a prime candidate for clearance revocation.

The bottom line

Putting aside Brennan’s disqualifying behavior, neither he nor anybody has an inherent right to a security clearance.

“Having a clearance is [a] privilege of government service, service in a very specific capacity wherein you cannot perform your duties to the nation without access to sensitive and classified data. It is not a right,” explained national security expert Sebastian Gorka in a piece for The Hill Thursday.

This is not a free speech or a First Amendment issue, and President Trump has every right to revoke anyone’s privilege to access and review information that is essential to protecting U.S. national security interests.


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Author: Jordan Schachtel

Jordan Schachtel is the national security correspondent for Conservative Review and editor of The Dossier for CRTV. Follow him on Twitter @JordanSchachtel.