Update – May 17, 2017 / 1605 EST
U.S. President Donald Trump’s alleged intelligence disclosure to Russia has endangered the life of a spy who was placed inside ISIS by Israel, current and former US officials are reported to have affirmed on Wednesday . . . .
When pressed by ABC News’ Jonathan Karl, McMaster would not say if Trump disclosed classified information. Trump said in a pair of tweets Tuesday he had the “absolute right” to share “facts” with the Russians.
But many in the counter-terrorism community say what the President did was a mistake.
“Russia is not part of the ISIS coalition,” Olsen said. “They are not our partner.”
The press on this story has come to mention the possibility of compromising a spy, i.e., a source of information inside ISIS.
Related audio podcast: http://www.bicom.org.uk/podcast/michael-herzog-bbc-world-service-newshour/
What follows are BackChannels earlier remarks, and in light of the seriousness of these allegations, the shrug in the first sentence may have been premature although the democratic and western bonds between Israel and the United States would indeed seem unshakable provided the United States hews to its Constitution, its heritage, its hard won ideals, principles, and values.
This blog contains the essential oaths taken by America’s military and security officers and officials throughout the body of the government. Readers may appreciate visiting those sworn statements:
If the American-Israeli intelligence relationship survived Pollard, it will survive this latest faux pas produced by President Trump’s uninhibited tongue. However, noted in the Reuters article cited below, the additional criticism adds to a parade of such small scandals.
Truth to tell, and at least in the past, Russia (cooperative Chechnya) has embedded spies in the ISIS ranks — and some have been caught and dispatched by ISIS.
Also, while Saddam’s former Baath officers and the ISIS ranks are real enemies for Assad, his allies, and the west, they have also been invited by their enemies to produce themselves — they are the enemy Assad really wanted (click on that last link) — and BackChannels believes that’s no secret.
Brigadier General Amnon Sofrin, a retired senior official in Israel’s foreign intelligence agency, said such agreements are subject to “unwritten rules” observed for decades.
“They say that you [the US] cannot make any use of sensitive information without any coordination or without asking my [Israel’s] permission,” he told journalists in a call organised by The Israel Project, a pro-Israel advocacy group.
While the president has the authority to disclose even the most highly classified information at will, in this case he did so without consulting the ally that provided it, which threatens to jeopardize a long-standing intelligence-sharing agreement, the U.S. officials said.
“I spoke to him (Lavrov) today,” a smiling Putin told a news conference with Italian Prime Minister Paolo Gentiloni in the Russian Black Sea resort of Sochi.
“I’ll be forced to issue him (Lavrov) with a reprimand because he did not share these secrets with us. Not with me, nor with representatives of Russia’s intelligence services. It was very bad of him.”
In the same Reuters’ piece: “”It’s hard to imagine what else these people who generate such nonsense and rubbish can dream up next,” said Putin, referring to unnamed U.S. politicians” — so says the world emperor when it comes to KGB everything but especially “active measures” and disinformation.