Ex-CIA Director Brennan: Trump ‘score settling’ with Pentagon changes

Former CIA Director John BrennanJohn Owen Brennan50 former intelligence officials warn NY Post story sounds like Russian disinformation Not treason, not a crime — but definitely a gross abuse of power Trump fires off dozens of tweets while recuperating at White House MORE argued Friday that President TrumpDonald John TrumpBiden has spoken with some GOP senators, chief of staff says Trump told advisers he could announce 2024 bid shortly after certification of Biden win: report Ivy League cancels winter sports amid US COVID-19 pandemic surge MORE was “score settling” with recent personnel changes at the Pentagon.

His comments come amid concerns that the president is trying to fill the Pentagon with loyalists who can help push through controversial executive actions in the final weeks of Trump’s presidency. 

The fears were sparked by the firing of Defense Secretary Mark EsperMark EsperDirector of DHS cyber agency expecting ouster Senior DHS cybersecurity official to step down at end of week Progressive House Democrats urge Biden against Defense chief with contractor ties MORE on Monday, and a series of resignations that quickly followed. 

“He wants people to be personally loyal to him,” Brennan said in an interview on CNN. “So therefore the firing of Mark Esper and the decapitating of civilian leadership within the Pentagon, I think clearly is score-settling on the part of Mr. Trump.”

Brennan, a vocal Trump critic, said that it wasn’t clear in his view if the president was trying to politicize the military, or if he’s thinking about doing something that could compromise national security before President-elect Joe BidenJoe BidenBiden has spoken with some GOP senators, chief of staff says Trump told advisers he could announce 2024 bid shortly after certification of Biden win: report Obama ‘troubled’ by GOP attempts to cast doubt on election results: ‘That’s a dangerous path’ MORE takes office.

“He still has the power of the presidency in his hands for the next 70 days,” Brennan said. “I’m hoping that people around him are counseling restraint so he does not engage in rash and reckless behavior, which he has unfortunately been known for.”  

Sources reportecly told CNN’s Jake TapperJacob (Jake) Paul TapperBiden campaign manager: McCarthy, GOP will feel pressure from constituents to accept president-elect The Hill’s 12:30 Report: World reacts to Biden’s election win Andrew Yang moving to Georgia to help Democrats in Senate runoffs MORE on Monday that the White House had apparently focused on pushing out Esper’s undersecretaries after Esper and his team argued against withdrawing troops from Afghanistan.

Acting Defense Secretary Christopher Miller hired a senior adviser who frequently pushed for the immediate removal of troops from Afghanistan. 

Brennan also said that he hopes Trump would not divulge national security secrets once he leaves office, but that it does worry him. 

“I do worry,” he said, “about what Trump might do to enhance his personal, political or financial standing in the future.”


Source: The Hills

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