Recently, long-time investigative reporter Jefferson Morley authored an eye-opening piece in The New Republic entitled “Democrats Are Trapped in Trump’s ‘Deep State’ War.” He said we are facing a depressing question: “Whose side must be taken in a power struggle between a legion of professional liars and a consummate bullshit artist?”
Even before he became president, Trump was at war with the “Deep State” when the U.S. intelligence community issued a report declaring that it had concluded that he received covert help from a foreign power.
This declaration was a big shock but the intelligence community had a credibility problem. Morley focused on two of Trump’s critics on cable TV, James Clapper and John Brennan:
“In March of 2013, then-Director of National Intelligence James Clapper told the Senate, falsely, that the NSA did not collect intelligence on hundreds of millions of Americans. Does that mean Clapper is wrong when he says Trump lives in a ‘no-fact zone reality bubble?’ Not necessarily.
“The CIA, under the directorship of John Brennan, fed false information about the agency’s torture program to the Senate Intelligence Committee investigators and, when the investigators discovered it was false, sought to charge them with a crime… Does that mean Brennan is right to say Trump’s talk of a CIA coup is ‘sociopathic rambling’? Not quite.”
There is a difference between Trump and the spymasters. He lies constantly about everything while Clapper and Brennan “lie selectively” allegedly to protect the country. Morley says this dispute masks a power struggle between Trump and a secret branch of the U.S. government with enormous powers.
Trump wants to seize control of the national security apparatus for his personal benefit. This is very dangerous. From the beginning, he has attacked institutions that try to constrain him such as the press, the courts and Congress. He has brazenly said he wants to be a dictator. Some may think he’s joking but his actions indicate otherwise.