August 16, 2018

Former CIA Chief John Brennan Loses His Security Clearance

“President Donald Trump moved to penalize a sharp critic on Wednesday, revoking the security clearance of Obama-era CIA Director John Brennan for making what he called ‘a series of unfounded and outrageous allegations’ about his administration.” (Reuters)

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The left believes Trump is abusing his power to punish and undermine his critics, and may be jeopardizing national security interests in the long run.

“Trump’s extraordinary decision to revoke Brennan’s security clearance — and possibly do the same for other top officials who are openly critical of the administration — probably won’t do much practically. But it sets a chilling precedent for both free speech and the peaceful transition of power between administrations.”


“Trump is trying to take Brennan’s legitimacy as a critic of him down a peg, while furthering the idea that so-called deep-state enemies of Trump have been nefariously using their access to secrets to keep the deep-state coup against him going.”

Washington Post

Some worry that Trump may strip clearances from even more former officials. “Those mentioned during the White House press briefing who are under consideration to have their clearances revoked have been on the front lines of the global cyber war... We cannot afford to lose their institutional knowledge during this critical time... This is the time to lock arms against the enemy, not to voluntarily disarm by taking our best, brightest and most experienced defenders off the battlefield.”


The right, while critical of Brennan, is divided about the revocation.

The right, while critical of Brennan, is divided about the revocation.

Many argue that “we certainly shouldn’t want to see former officials lose their security clearances just because they criticize the president robustly... John Brennan, though, presents a different case. ‘Erratic’ properly describes his shrill and often mindless attacks on Trump. Moreover, his hatred of the president is so palpable that one can easily imagine him using access to secret information to harm the administration.”

Power Line

Others, however, suggest that “allowing his understandable offense at Brennan's frequent and ferocious criticisms to drive his policy decisions, Trump has put his ego before the national interest... Trump is using his power to silence political criticism from the intelligence community.”

Washington Examiner

“We’re all for challenging Mr. Brennan’s partisan motives and for investigating his behavior in office... But

Wall Street Journal

On the bright side...

“Bears are doing it all this summer. They've been caught jumping into pools, sneaking sips of margaritas in hot tubs, and now they're going on liquor runs.”


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