According to a new report in the Washington Post, President Trump has continuously endangered national security and put our nation’s secrets at risk by using communications that have not been secured against interception through encryption — and he’s used those devices on calls with people currently in the spotlight under the banner of the impeachable crimes Trump has committed, Rudy Giuliani being the most prominent.
Unsecured lines are nothing new in this White House — Trump has been scrutinized for this almost endlessly since his inauguration. But the investigative report in WaPo outlines a troubling pattern in which Trump, realizing that using secured White House lines enabled his then-Chief of Staff John Kelly to keep a log of both the calls he made and who he made them to, kept reverting back to using his unsecured cell phone — indicating both that he valued his personal privacy over national security and that he knew he was skirting the official procedures and continued to do it on purpose.
The phone records released this past week by the House Intelligence Committee are truly damning for both Giuliani — who continues to this day to try and complete the mission he began in Ukraine to dig up political dirt on Joe Biden — and for Office of Management and Budget Director Mick Mulvaney, who also serves as Trump’s current (acting) Chief of Staff.
But also listed in those records is an entity shown only as “-1,” widely believed to be Trump, during calls that are not indicated in any way to have been encrypted. Officials in the White House told the Post they were concerned that those calls — specifically made in coordination of the effort to pressure Ukraine to mount an official investigation against the “corruption” Trump insists he was interested in rooting out — were or may have been intercepted by Russia, who would see the effort as the realization of their long-term goals.
Russia’s ultimate goal, of course, is to sow discord. But in this case, their aim is ameliorated significantly by moving the focus from their security services to Ukraine in the search for who hacked America’s 2016 election; our intelligence agencies have long concluded that it was Russia, but Putin — and now Trump, Giuliani, and their GOP allies — have all been trying to pitch the idea that it was Ukraine instead.
That’s false, of course. But an intercepted, unsecured phone call between Donald Trump and Rudy Giuliani discussing the possibility that it is true would go a long way toward vindication for Vladimir Putin. In fact, the former deputy chief of Russia operations at the Central Intelligence Agency, John Sipher, says that the numerous unsecured calls Trump has made have “given the Russians ammunition they can use in an overt fashion, a covert fashion, or in the twisting of information.”
That’s good for Trump, but bad for America.
Featured image via screen capture
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