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  1. Subscriberno1marauder
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    30 Jan '19 00:40
    Apparently his own appointees disagree with the Donald on virtually every aspect of US foreign policy:

    Directly contradicting President Donald Trump, U.S. intelligence agencies told Congress on Tuesday that North Korea is unlikely to dismantle its nuclear arsenal, that the Islamic State group remains a threat and that the Iran nuclear deal is working. The chiefs made no mention of a crisis at the U.S.-Mexican border for which Trump has considered declaring a national emergency.

    Their analysis stands in sharp contrast to Trump’s almost singular focus on security gaps at the border as the biggest threat facing the United States.


    Top security officials including FBI Director Christopher Wray, CIA Director Gina Haspel and Director of National Intelligence Dan Coats presented an update to the Senate intelligence committee on Tuesday on their annual assessment of global threats. They warned of an increasingly diverse range of security dangers around the globe, from North Korean nuclear weapons to Chinese cyberespionage to Russian campaigns to undermine Western democracies.

    Coats said intelligence information does not support the idea that North Korean leader Kim Jong Un will eliminate his nuclear weapons and the capacity for building more — a notion that is the basis of the U.S. negotiating strategy.


    “We currently assess that North Korea will seek to retain its WMD (weapons of mass destruction) capabilities and is unlikely to completely give up its nuclear weapons and production capability because its leaders ultimately view nuclear weapons as critical to regime survival,” Coats told the committee.

    Coats did note that North Korean leader Kim Jong Un has expressed support for ridding the Korean Peninsula of nuclear weapons and over the past year has not test-fired a nuclear-capable missile or conducted a nuclear test.

    The “Worldwide Threat Assessment” report on which Coats based his testimony said U.S. intelligence continues to “observe activity inconsistent with” full nuclear disarmament by the North. “In addition, North Korea has for years underscored its commitment to nuclear arms, including through an order in 2018 to mass-produce weapons and an earlier law — and constitutional change — affirming the country’s nuclear status,” it said.

    The report said Kim’s support at his June 2018 Singapore summit with Trump for “complete denuclearization of the Korean peninsula” is a formulation linked to an end to American military deployments and exercises involving nuclear weapons.


    Trump asserted after the Singapore summit that North Korea no longer poses a nuclear threat. However, Coats and other intelligence officials made clear they see it differently.

    “The capabilities and threat that existed a year ago are still there,” said Lt. Gen. Robert Ashley, the director of the Defense Intelligence Agency.

    Plans for a follow-up Trump-Kim summit are in the works, but no agenda, venue or date has been announced.

    More broadly, the intelligence report on which Coats and the heads of other intelligence agencies based their testimony predicted that security threats to the United States and its allies this year will expand and diversify, driven in part by China and Russia. It says Moscow and Beijing are more aligned than at any other point since the mid-1950s and their global influence is rising even as U.S. relations with traditional allies are in flux.

    “Some U.S. allies and partners are seeking greater independence from Washington in response to their perception of changing U.S. policies on security and trade,” the report said, without providing examples or further explanation.

    The report also said the Islamic State group “remains a terrorist and insurgent threat” inside Iraq, where the government faces “an increasingly disenchanted public.”

    The intelligence assessment, which is provided annually to Congress, made no mention of a crisis at the U.S.-Mexico border, which Trump has asserted as the basis for his demand that Congress finance a border wall. The report predicted additional U.S.-bound migration from El Salvador, Guatemala and Honduras, with migrants preferring to travel in caravans in hopes of a safer journey.

    In Syria, where Trump has ordered a full withdrawal of U.S. troops, the government of Bashar Assad is likely to consolidate control, with Russia and Iran attempting to further entrench themselves in Syria, the report said. Asked for her assessment, Haspel said of the IS group: “They’re still dangerous.” She added that they still command “thousands of fighters in Iraq and Syria.”

    The intelligence agencies said Iran continues to work with other parties to the nuclear deal it reached with the U.S. and other Western nations. In doing so, they said, it has at least temporarily lessened the nuclear threat. In May 2018, Trump withdrew the U.S. from that accord, which he called a terrible deal that would not stop Iran from going nuclear.

    The intelligence assessment of Afghanistan, more than 17 years into a conflict that began after the 9/11 attacks on the U.S., projected a continued military stalemate. Without mentioning prospects for a peace deal, which appear to have improved only in recent days, the report said, “neither the Afghan government nor the Taliban will be able to gain a strategic military advantage in the Afghan war in the coming year” if the U.S. maintains its current levels of support. Trump has ordered a partial pullback of U.S. forces this year, although no firm plan is in place.

    Coats told the committee that Russia and perhaps other countries are likely to attempt to use social media and other means to influence the 2020 U.S. presidential election.

    “We expect our adversaries and strategic competitors to refine their capabilities and add new tactics as they learn from each other’s experiences, suggesting the threat landscape could look very different in 2020 and future elections,” the intelligence report said.

    The report specifically warned about Russia’s cyberattack capabilities.

    “Moscow is now staging cyberattack assets to allow it to disrupt or damage U.S. civilian and military infrastructure during a crisis,” it said.

    https://apnews.com/5bb33704147f4951a040dcb53d709586

    Does Trump ever even talk to these people? Apparently he doesn't bother to read the daily intelligence briefings either. https://www.spin.com/2018/02/trump-daily-intelligence-briefs-reading/
  2. Behind the scenes
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    30 Jan '19 00:59
    @no1marauder said
    Apparently his own appointees disagree with the Donald on virtually every aspect of US foreign policy:

    Directly contradicting President Donald Trump, U.S. intelligence agencies told Congress on Tuesday that North Korea is unlikely to dismantle its nuclear arsenal, that the Islamic State group remains a threat and that the Iran nuclear deal is working. The chiefs ...[text shortened]... intelligence briefings either. https://www.spin.com/2018/02/trump-daily-intelligence-briefs-reading/
    Yeah, I saw that one. It seems Trump was correct when he said he "took advice from himself, because he has a great mind" If this were not such a reckless and dangerous way to conduct our nation's security affairs, it would be funny.
  3. Subscriberno1marauder
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    30 Jan '19 01:06
    @mchill said
    Yeah, I saw that one. It seems Trump was correct when he said he "took advice from himself, because he has a great mind" If this were not such a reckless and dangerous way to conduct our nation's security affairs, it would be funny.
    This article expanding on the intelligence briefings (which aren't daily under Trump) is funny in a pathetic sort of way:

    When Donald Trump was elected president, it quickly became obvious that the traditional national-security briefing a person in his position receives daily would be well beyond his zone of proximal development. The briefings were slimmed down in length, chopped up into easy-to-digest bullet points, and decorated with lots of graphs and pictures. Alas, the Washington Post reports, even the kiddie version of the presidential brief has proven too challenging. Now, Trump gets his briefing verbally.

    Trump, the Post reports, “has opted to rely on an oral briefing of select intelligence issues” because reading the brief — which every president has been able to do since its existence began — “is not Trump’s preferred ‘style of learning,’ according to a person with knowledge of the situation.”

    Also, Trump does not receive his verbal briefing daily, but instead “about every two to three days on average in recent months, typically around 11 a.m.” That’s when “executive time” ends and Trump has to turn off Fox News to listen to officials for a while, before he gets more screen time later in the day.

    Perhaps not surprisingly, while the verbal method comports with Trump’s preferred learning style, he does not show very strong listening skills:

    Trump would discuss the news of the day or a tweet he sent about North Korea or the border wall — or anything else on his mind, two people familiar with the briefings said.



    On such days, there would only be a few minutes left — and the briefers would have barely broached the topics they came to discuss, one senior U.S. official said.



    “He often goes off on tangents during the briefing and you’d have to rein him back in,” one official said.

    So even the verbal briefings devolve into rambling stories by the person who is supposed to be receiving the briefing.

    http://nymag.com/intelligencer/2018/02/dumbed-down-security-briefings-still-too-difficult-for-trump.html?gtm=bottom&gtm=bottom
  4. SubscriberSuzianne
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    30 Jan '19 02:09
    @no1marauder said
    This article expanding on the intelligence briefings (which aren't daily under Trump) is funny in a pathetic sort of way:

    When Donald Trump was elected president, it quickly became obvious that the traditional national-security briefing a person in his position receives daily would be well beyond his zone of proximal development. The briefings were slimmed down in leng ...[text shortened]... ncer/2018/02/dumbed-down-security-briefings-still-too-difficult-for-trump.html?gtm=bottom&gtm=bottom
    This is precisely why most of us (meaning Americans in general) did not vote for this self-styled "genius".
  5. Standard membershavixmir
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    30 Jan '19 07:32
    US intelligence... hahahaha
  6. Germany
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    30 Jan '19 16:10
    The Donald responded to his own intelligence service's reports in characteristic fashion, declaring without apparent irony:
    [...] There (sic) economy is now crashing, which is the only thing holding them back. Be careful of Iran. Perhaps Intelligence (sic) should go back to school!
  7. Joined
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    30 Jan '19 16:21
    @shavixmir said
    US intelligence... hahahaha
    We have the government we deserve.
  8. Standard membershavixmir
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    30 Jan '19 19:52
    @js357 said
    We have the government we deserve.
    Obviously I’m going to write: yes, yes you do.

    But in reality you don’t. You have the government Whodey deserves.

    Actually, you have the government that decades of ignoring the masses deserves.

    Oh, I better get back to that brexit thread before I start getting serious...
  9. Joined
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    30 Jan '19 23:10
    @shavixmir said
    Obviously I’m going to write: yes, yes you do.

    But in reality you don’t. You have the government Whodey deserves.

    Actually, you have the government that decades of ignoring the masses deserves.

    Oh, I better get back to that brexit thread before I start getting serious...
    Would you say that the EU is also in the process of "ignoring the masses"?
  10. Joined
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    30 Jan '19 23:371 edit
    @no1marauder said
    Apparently his own appointees disagree with the Donald on virtually every aspect of US foreign policy:

    Directly contradicting President Donald Trump, U.S. intelligence agencies told Congress on Tuesday that North Korea is unlikely to dismantle its nuclear arsenal, that the Islamic State group remains a threat and that the Iran nuclear deal is working. The chiefs ...[text shortened]... intelligence briefings either. https://www.spin.com/2018/02/trump-daily-intelligence-briefs-reading/
    Again, you fail to understand Trump.

    No one thinks that fat boy will give up his death toys. The bottom line is, Trump was able to stop him from playing with them in the Pacific, and will play up this fact through the 2020 election cycle.

    Also, he will do the same regarding his success in Syria against ISIS by saying troops are no longer needed.

    These are all election gimmicks. No one thinks that either North Korea or Syria can ever be fixed.

    But at least it beats Barak Obama going to war in places like Libya and then having ISIS take over and stand idly by and watch a genocide in Syria with a subsequent mass immigration across the globe into Western Europe because no one else gives a damn about them.

    It's like the inauguration crowd. He simply plays it up as being the biggest and the best because he is a self promoter. That is part of his charm.

    But at least it beats lying to us about our health care telling us it will be more affordable and be able to keep our doctor and health plans.
  11. Subscriberno1marauder
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    31 Jan '19 00:08
    @whodey said
    Again, you fail to understand Trump.

    No one thinks that fat boy will give up his death toys. The bottom line is, Trump was able to stop him from playing with them in the Pacific, and will play up this fact through the 2020 election cycle.

    Also, he will do the same regarding his success in Syria against ISIS by saying troops are no longer needed.

    These are all electio ...[text shortened]... r health care telling us it will be more affordable and be able to keep our doctor and health plans.
    Speaking of lying: 20+ million more people got health plans under the ACA. https://aspe.hhs.gov/system/files/pdf/207946/ACAHistoricIncreaseCoverage.pdf
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