Donald Trump is an avid Fox 'News' viewer, and sadly, that 'news' channel is the source of his intelligence, Presidential Daily Briefings be damned!
While watching Fox and Friends Weekend edition, Trump decided to make up his own doubly alternative facts. He deduced from the segment that The New York Times revealed information that foiled a plot to kill Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi, the leader of the Islamic State.
But they actually did no such thing, nor did anyone in the Department of Defense blame 'The NY Times' for this leak.
That Fox News report cited comments by Gen. Tony Thomas, the head of the United States Special Operations Command, in an interview conducted Friday by the network’s intelligence correspondent, Catherine Herridge, at the Aspen Security Forum in Colorado.
The report said that The Times had disclosed intelligence in an article on June 8, 2015, about an American military raid in Syria that led to death of one of Mr. Baghdadi’s key lieutenants, Abu Sayyaf, and the capture of his wife, who played an important role in the group.
General Thomas said that a valuable lead on Mr. Baghdadi’s whereabouts “was leaked in a prominent national newspaper about a week later and that lead went dead.” He did not name The Times.
But a review of the record shows that information made public in a Pentagon news release more than three weeks before the Times article, and extensively covered at the time by numerous news media outlets, would have tipped off Mr. Baghdadi that the United States was questioning an important Islamic State operative who knew of his recent whereabouts and some of his methods of communication. Further, the information in the Times article on June 8 came from United States government officials who were aware that the details would be published.
A White House spokesman had no comment on Mr. Trump’s tweet. Defense Secretary Jim Mattis said on Friday that he believed Mr. Baghdadi, whose possible death has been the subject of repeated rumors, was still alive.
What could they say? He's batsh*t nuts? If only that sort of honesty existed.
Brett Velakovich, former Army Veteran and author of the book 'Drone Warrior' tried to place the blame on major news media, but didn't mention any names. Clayton Morris baited him with a leading question about these media people crossing the line. How dare they report publicly accessible information!
VELAKOVICH: These prominent news outlets have definitely crossed the line at this point. I think a lot of times they don't realize that their words can can kill and a lot of times some of these news outlets, you know, they don't understand the implications that these things have towards national security. And so in this particular case, a General Thomas, a SOCOM Commander, was speaking to an article that was written in 2015 that referenced a raid that took place that revealed information about our capabilities; capabilities that quite frankly we need to protect more and more these days. ...We've got to be careful with this. We've got to do something to really stop these leaks, especially coming from news outlets who have a complete disregard for our national security.
The N.Y. Times provides the facts, Trump distorts them, more than Fox 'News,' which is terrifying.
In the article cited by Fox News and published more than three weeks after the raid, The Times reported new details, including that as much as seven terabytes of data had been seized, which, with information from Umm Sayyaf, provided new insights into how Mr. Baghdadi operated and tried to avoid detection.
The Pentagon itself provided the confirmation on May 16, 2015, that Abu Sayyaf’s wife had been captured.
And the Times account was published not a week later, but 23 days after the Pentagon statement.
He has such a love-hate relationship with the Times, which changes by the minute, he must have been angry this weekend after they published his exact words last week. Fake News!