House Intelligence Committee Chairman Rep. Adam Schiff (D-CA) took apart Trump’s Iran lies and pointed out where he is fudging or exaggerating evidence.
Transcript via CBS’s Face The Nation:
REP. SCHIFF: I don’t quibble with it. I think it’s just plain wrong. There was no discussion in the Gang of Eight briefings that these are the four embassies that are being targeted and we have exquisite intelligence that shows these are the specific targets.
MARGARET BRENNAN: What about U.S. embassy, Baghdad?
REP. SCHIFF: It- it—
MARGARET BRENNAN: He said that was specifically referenced.
REP. SCHIFF: –Well, I don’t recall, frankly, in that briefing there being a specific discussion about bombing the U.S. embassy in Baghdad. The brief was much more along the lines, frankly, of something that Secretary Pompeo admitted the other day when he said that we don’t know precisely where and we don’t know precisely when. That was much more the nature of the briefing that we got. In the view of the briefers, there was plotting. There was a- an effort to escalate being planned, but they didn’t have specificity. And so when you hear the president out there on FOX, he is fudging the intelligence and when you hear the Secretary say, well, that wasn’t what the intelligence said, but that’s my personal belief, he is fudging. When Secretary Pompeo was on your show last week and made the claim that the intelligence analysis was that taking Soleimani out would improve our security and not- and leaving them in would make us less safe, that is also fudging. That’s not an intelligence conclusion. That is Pompeo’s personal opinion. Intelligence–
MARGARET BRENNAN: Is that a polite way of saying they’re lying?
REP. SCHIFF: Well, you know, you could certainly put it that way. But frankly, I think what they are doing is they are overstating and exaggerating what the intelligence shows. And when you’re talking about justifying acts that might bring us into warfare with Iran, that’s a dangerous thing to do.
The administration is lying. Sec. of Defense Mark Esper admitted as much. The cover story for the Soleimani strike has fallen apart. Trump lies about everything, so it should not surprise the American people that he lied about the basis for the action against Iran.
The problem is bigger than Trump’s lies. It’s that he has now surrounded himself with an entire administration that is willing to believe his lies and turn his falsehoods into policy.
Personal opinions are valued more than intelligence, and that sets up a perilous situation for US national security.
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Mr. Easley is the founder/managing editor and Senior White House and Congressional correspondent for PoliticusUSA.Jason has a Bachelor’s Degree in Political Science. His graduate work focused on public policy, with a specialization in social reform movements.
Awards and Professional Memberships
Member of the Society of Professional Journalists and The American Political Science Association