In an interview with CNN’s Jake Tapper, Brennan responded to Ratcliffe’s recent decision to outclass former CIA director’s notes in 2016 after informing then-President Barack Obama about intelligence related to the Russian Security Service report that Clinton ” a proposal from one of your foreign policy advisers denigrating Donald Trump by sparking a scandal alleging interference by the Russian security service. “
“John Ratcliffe is anything but an intelligence professional. It is appalling for his selective disclosure of information. It is meant to advance the political interests of Donald Trump and Republicans that are consistent with him,” Brennan said of the director of national intelligence.
“These were my notes from 201
The former CIA director also pushed back for Ratcliffe’s release of a heavily edited CIA memo related to the investigation referral that was then forwarded to the FBI. The memo states that the Russians claim that Clinton’s efforts to spark a scandal were “a means to distract the public from their use of a private email server.”
“If in fact what the Russians claimed is that Hillary tried to highlight the reported links between Trump and the Russians, if that is correct and a big if, then there is nothing illegal about it at all,” Brennan said.
“John Ratcliffe and others are trying to portray this as illegal activity that deserves a follow-up investigation by the FBI. No. It was campaign activity,” he added.
Allies of the President have used the documents released by Ratcliffe, including the release of Brennan’s notes and the CIA memo, as evidence that the FBI should investigate unsubstantiated allegations that Clinton committed crimes during the 2016 campaign.
They also cited the documents to further undermine the unanimous view of the intelligence services that Russia intervened in 2016 to help Trump ahead of the 2020 elections. They claimed, with no evidence, that Clinton tried to create a scandal to hurt Trump.
On Tuesday, CNN confirmed that Ratcliffe had released Brennan’s notes and the intelligence memo – a decision made a week after the publication of a letter setting out Russian intelligence allegations about Clinton.
In a statement to CNN, Ratcliffe said he released the documents on “orders from President Trump”.
“Today I released additional documents on orders from President Trump that are relevant to the ongoing oversight and investigative activities of Congress,” it said.
Trump tweeted Tuesday night about the Russia investigation and promised to downgrade all related materials and documents “relating to the greatest political crime in American history, the Russia Hoax. As well as the Hillary Clinton Email Scandal”.
That news came during a Twitter spree attacking former FBI director James Comey, former FBI deputy director Andrew McCabe, former special adviser Robert Mueller and the FBI, where Trump said he would release the documents without “editorial staff” . Trump tweeted Paul Sperry, a Conservative journalist and colleague at the Hoover Institution, who wrote that if the documents were released it would show that “the FBI and CIA not only knew that the Russian” collusion “against Trump was political dirty trick, but that they were on the trick. “
However, in a later tweet, Trump said he had already released all relevant information – but it was unclear what he was referring to beyond the documents ratcliffe released in recent days.
Brennan told CNN on Tuesday that the memo released by Ratcliffe, which he referred to as the CIOL (Counterintelligence Operational Lead), is just one of several documents submitted to the FBI in connection with Russian activities during the 2016 race.
“There are many other CIOLs who talk about the contacts that have taken place between people connected to the Trump campaign and the Russians. So he might want to think about offsetting some of these releases by speaking to the American public Provides information on what intelligence agencies found out about Russia’s interactions with those involved in the Trump campaign during that period, “he said.
Last week, CNN reported that Ratcliffe released unverified Russian intelligence, despite concerns raised by the CIA and the National Security Agency.
Career intelligence officials were concerned about the disclosure of the information because it had not been verified and believed that it might reveal sources and methods. Ratcliffe overruled these concerns and sent the document to Lindsey Graham, chairman of the Senate Judiciary.
This declassified document, which contains a 2016 assessment by Russian Intelligence, that Hillary Clinton approved a campaign plan to stir up a scandal against then-candidate Trump by tying him to Russia and the National Democratic Committee hack Charges against him sparked Democrats and former intelligence officials that Ratcliffe politicized intelligence agencies and shared Russian disinformation.
It was the latest in a series of declassified documents Ratcliffe and Attorney General William Barr made available to Senate Republicans and others ahead of the November election.
Ratcliffe noted in the executive summary he provided to Graham that the intelligence community “is ignorant of the veracity of this claim or the extent to which Russian intelligence analysis might reflect exaggeration or forgery”.
Ratcliffe later made a clarifying statement that the information “is not Russian disinformation”. However, several intelligence and law enforcement officials say the possibility that it was disinformation has not been ruled out by the secret services.