Donald J. Trump has called previous intelligence chiefs all sorts of bad names: liar, loser … you name it.
Dan Coats, though, is the current director of national intelligence. He once was a U.S. senator from Indiana. He’s a Republican. He’s a solid public servant. He said in a tweet that the “Russians are actively seeking to divide our Alliance, and we must not allow that to happen.”
He is a Trump appointee.
What has been the president’s response to his DNI’s assessment? Nothing. He’s not paying attention. He is instead denigrating our allies in Canada, Mexico, Germany, the UK, the European Union, Japan because — according to Trump — their trade policies pose a “national security threat” to the United States of America.
C’mon, Mr. President. DNI Coats has it right. You, sir, have it wrong!
The Russians want to break up the EU. They still fear the North Atlantic Treaty Organization, set up after World War II as a hedge against expansion from the Soviet Union and its bloc of Eastern European nations.
Coats has joined other intelligence officials in declaring that without a shred of doubt the Russians meddled in our 2016 presidential election. They all have declared, in one figure of speech or another, that the interference constituted a “direct attack” on our government and our electoral process.
Trump’s response? He keeps giving the Russians a pass all the while talking harshly about our trading partners and our military allies.