John R. Schindler writes: It would be terrible for the United States if the Trump administration convinces citizens that any sort of derin devlet [Deep State] in Turkish fashion exists in our country. Since it certainly does not. In the first place, American spies exhibit no political unity. There are Republicans, there are Democrats, there are Independents. Nearly every political viewpoint under the sun is represented in the IC, and while generalizations can be made — e.g. FBI agents are mostly conservatives while CIA analysts are largely liberals — they are so broad, and so marred by exceptions, as to be almost useless.
When spies in Washington leak to the media, they do so not out of any ideology, much less overt partisanship, but to protect bureaucratic turf and to settle personal scores. Mark Felt, the senior FBI official whose leaks to The Washington Post as the infamous Deep Throat made Watergate a national scandal, spilled the beans on the Nixon White House for entirely personal reasons. President Nixon repeatedly refused to appoint Felt — who was no liberal — the Bureau’s director, the top post that the bitter leaker felt he deserved. Exposing the Watergate scandal was Felt’s careerist vendetta.
Today, the Intelligence Community is deeply unhappy with President Trump. They dislike his repeated public insults and impugning of their professional integrity — something no president has ever done before. Many spies distrust the commander-in-chief, which is why some of our secret agencies are withholding highly classified intelligence from a White House they think is penetrated by Russian intelligence.
The Russia angle is most troubling to the IC. Behind closed doors, plenty of American intelligence experts believe that President Trump is the pawn of the Kremlin, wittingly or not, and assess that it’s only a matter of time before unseemly Moscow ties are exposed and the White House enters unsurvivable political crisis. [Continue reading…]