Trump shared secret info about IS with Russians

A Washington Post report that President Donald Trump shared highly classified information with Russian diplomats in a meeting last week drew immediate reactions from intelligence officials, who warn any revelations jeopardizing "a critical source of intelligence on the Islamic State" would severely impact worldwide cooperation on matters of national security.

He called Trump's remarks "wholly appropriate".

Trump said on Twitter on Tuesday he had an "absolute right" to share facts with Russian Federation so that it can be more active in fighting Islamic State militants.

One of the officials said the intelligence discussed by Trump in his meeting with Lavrov was classified "Top Secret" and held in a secure "compartment" to which only a handful of intelligence officials have access.

According to the Post, the information that Trump shared with the Russians is what's called "Code Word" classified. It is naive to take anything this White House says at face value.

The Kremlin dismissed the reports of Trump's actions as "complete nonsense". "Revealing classified information at this level is extremely unsafe and puts at risk the lives of Americans and those who gather intelligence for our country".

"Never before have I witnessed a senior government official so carelessly threaten an intelligence-sharing relationship", a former senior intelligence official told CNN.

The official, who spoke on condition of anonymity because the official was not authorised to speak publicly, would not say which country's intelligence was divulged.

On Capitol Hill, Democrats and Republicans alike expressed concern about the president's disclosures. Sen. John McCain, R-Ariz., called the reports "deeply disturbing" and said they could affect the willingness of USA allies and partners to share intelligence with the U.S.

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But we're hearing nothing of substance from neutered Paul Ryan (natch), who said last night through a spokesman that "we have no way to know what was said" during the Russians' Oval Office meetup.

In a series of Tweets Tuesday morning, the president said that he discussed facts related to airline safety and terrorism out of "humanitarian" concerns and in an effort to prompt Russian Federation to take a stronger stand against ISIS.

Trump wrote he shared the information with the Russians for "humanitarian reasons, plus I want Russia to greatly step up their fight against ISIS & terrorism".

McMcaster does not actually deny the core of the initial report in The Washington Post: that President Trump conveyed classified details of an ISIS plot, shared by a foreign intelligence partner, including the location from which those plot details emerged.

In a shock twist, the information reportedly came from a USA ally who had not authorized Washington to share it with Moscow, a potential blow to intelligence relationships based on trust that secrets will be kept.

"I was in the room, it didn't happen", H.R. McMaster, Trump's national security adviser, told reporters outside the White House late Monday. He's questioned the competence of intelligence officials, challenged their assessment that Russian Federation meddled in last year's election to help him win, and accused them of leaking information about him and his associates.

Asked why the NSA and Central Intelligence Agency were put on notice if the revelations were not problematic, McMaster cast the notification as being provided "from an overabundance of caution". The Post stated that "the information the president relayed had been provided by a us partner through an intelligence-sharing arrangement considered so sensitive that details have been withheld from allies and tightly restricted even within the USA government".

The CIA and the Office of the Director of National Intelligence have declined to comment. Both Jordanian and U.S. officials said Tuesday the call with Abdullah was scheduled last week and is unrelated to the Russian Federation meeting. "I have people brief me on great intel every day" (the size of his hands, the taste of his chocolate cake, great intel - it's all the same to him), and then proceed to dish about life-or-death intelligence that was obtained on the hush hush from another nation's undercover agent.

"I read The Washington Post story and I read General McMaster's response, which tends to refute the story, rebut the story", Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell of Kentucky told Bloomberg in an interview Tuesday morning.

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