Leaked – Situation Room Row Between Trump & His Top General


 A confrontation in the Situation Room with President Trump and his most senior military commander has been leaked. President Trump’s recent announcement that he would be pulling troops out of Syria “very soon” has revealed a major source of tension between the president and his generals.

This week, Trump held a summit in his White House situation room on how to get US troops out of Syria but there has been an astonishing breach.

Chairman of Joint chief of Staff, Marine General Joseph Dunford, clashed over what to do about Syria with Dunford reprimanding the President- so Trump demanded an immediate pull-out.

Both Dunford and Defense Secretary Jim Mattis went head to head with Trump on pulling out of Syria in the Situation Room encounter.

Talks with the CIA were also leaked, which is bound to increase tensions in Washington over Syria.

The Mail Online reports:

Five officials brief the Associated Press on that happened as Gen Dunford told him his approach was ‘unproductive’ and demanded that he issue ‘specific instructions’ on how to proceed.

And the Washington Post detailed how Trump demanded of its head of drone operations – an official whose name is a secret – why operators had waited until a terrorist had left his family’s home before killing him.

The two leaks will serve to increase tensions in Washington over Syria.

Trump on Tuesday said ‘I want to get out. I want to bring our troops back home,’ and later that day held the meeting in the situation room.


Closely guarded secret: The White House situation room – where Trump was photographed in September 2017 – is supposed to be sacrosanct but five officials brief the Associated Press on a confrontation between the President and the Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff

Trump’s desire for a rapid withdrawal faced unanimous opposition from the Joint Chiefs of Staff, the Pentagon, the State Department and the intelligence community, all of which argued that keeping the 2,000 U.S. soldiers currently in Syria is key to ensuring the Islamic State does not reconstitute itself.

But as they huddled in the Situation Room, the president was vocal and vehement in insisting that the withdrawal be completed quickly if not immediately, according to five administration officials briefed on Tuesday’s White House meeting of Trump and his top aides.

The officials weren’t authorized to discuss internal deliberations and requested anonymity.

If those aides failed in obtaining their desired outcome, it may have been because a strategy that’s worked in the past – giving Trump an offer he can’t refuse – appears to have backfired.

Rather than offer Trump a menu of pullout plans, with varying timelines and options for withdrawing step-by-step, the team sought to frame it as a binary choice: Stay in Syria to ensure the Islamic State can’t regroup, or pull out completely.

Documents presented to the president included several pages of possibilities for staying in, but only a brief description of an option for full withdrawal that emphasized significant risks and downsides, including the likelihood that Iran and Russia would take advantage of a U.S. vacuum.

Ultimately, Trump chose that option anyway.

The president had opened the meeting with a tirade about U.S. intervention in Syria and the Middle East more broadly, repeating lines from public speeches in which he’s denounced previous administrations for ‘wasting’ $7 trillion in the region over the past 17 years.

What has the U.S. gotten for the money and American lives expended in Syria? ‘Nothing,’ Trump said over and over, according to the officials.

The intensity of Trump’s tone and demeanor raised eyebrows and unease among the top brass gathered to hash out a Syria plan with Trump, officials said: Gen. Joseph Dunford, chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff; Defense Secretary James Mattis, CIA chief Mike Pompeo and acting Secretary of State John Sullivan.

At one point, Dunford spoke up, one official said, telling Trump that his approach was not productive and asked him to give the group specific instructions as to what he wanted.

Trump’s response was to demand an immediate withdrawal of all American troops and an end to all U.S. civilian stabilization programs designed to restore basic infrastructure to war-shattered Syrian communities.

Mattis countered, arguing that an immediate withdrawal could be catastrophic and was logistically impossible to pull off in any responsible way, without risking the return of the Islamic State and other terrorist groups in newly liberated territories, the officials said. Mattis floated a one-year withdrawal as an alternative.

Trump then relented – but only slightly, telling his aides they could have five or six months to complete the mission to destroy the Islamic State and then get out, according to the officials.

Trump also indicated that he did not want to hear in October that the military had been unable to fully defeat the Islamic State and had to remain in Syria for longer.

The president had spoken. But what to say about it publicly?

In a brief and vague statement released Wednesday, the White House said the U.S. role in Syria is coming to a ‘rapid end’ and emphasized that the U.S. was counting on other countries and the U.N. to deal with Syria’s future.

But it offered no specificity as to the timing of a U.S. withdrawal.

‘The president has actually been very good in not giving us a specific timeline,’ Lt. Gen. Kenneth McKenzie, director of the Joint Staff, said Thursday. ‘We’ve always thought that as we reach finale against ISIS in Syria, we’re going to adjust the level of our presence there. So in that sense, nothing has actually changed.’

Mattis said Friday that the military is talking with Kurdish partners and others in Syria to resolve questions over US support once the United States eventually withdraws from the war-torn country.

‘We are in consultation with our allies and partners right now, so we’ll work all this out,’ Mattis said when asked whether the US military is committed to supporting Syria’s Kurdish fighters.

Pentagon officials stressed that no formal order had been handed down to the military to alter course or start a withdrawal. Nonetheless, the officials said Trump was clear in his intent.

For Trump, any notion of a ‘timeline’ comes with significant political risk.

After all, he had regularly bashed Obama on the campaign trail for forecasting his military moves in advance.

In fact, Trump was so critical of Obama for putting an arbitrary deadline on the 2011 Iraq withdrawal that he dubbed Obama ‘the founder of ISIS,’ arguing that Obama had signaled to al-Qaeda sympathizers in Iraq that they need only wait the U.S. out.

The leak of the Situation Room showdown was matched by another leak of top-secret activity – this time talks with the CIA operative in charge of its drone strikes om his very first day in office.

The Washington Post revealed how Trump met three agency officials when he visited CIA headquarters in Langley, Virginia, and was shown a feed from Syria, where Obama had limited CIA drones to surveillance flights.

He ordered them to arm CIA drones there and said, according to two former officials who spoke to the Washington Post: ‘If you can do it in ten days, get it done.’

Then he was shown a video of a previous strike in which a terrorist was killed after leaving his family home and responded by saying: ‘Why did you wait?’

Trump has been infuriated by leaks throughout his presidency and demanded action against leakers repeatedly.

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ALERT ALERT

GOP Activist Investigating Hillary Clinton’s Lost Emails
Found Dead — Apparent Suicide By Black Plastic Bag Republican activist Peter Smith was found dead in his hotel room in May 2017 in Rochester, Minnesota.

The hotel staff found Smith with a black plastic bag on his head. He was trying to obtain Hillary Clinton’s lost emails.

UPDATE: Mueller and Congressional investigators have interviewed Smith’s acquaintances several times. Our sources say there is much more to this story.

The Wall Street Journal reported:

Peter W. Smith, a Republican political activist and financier from Chicago who mounted an effort to obtain former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton’s emails from Russian hackers, died on May 14 after asphyxiating himself in a hotel room in Rochester, Minn., according to local authorities. He was 81 years old.

Mr. Smith’s body was found by a hotel clerk in the Aspen Suites hotel, located across the street from the Mayo Clinic, according to a Rochester Police Department report. An associate of Mr. Smith said that he had recently visited the clinic. A representative for the facility wouldn’t confirm if Mr. Smith was a patient.

Mr. Smith died about 10 days after an interview with The Wall Street Journal in which he recounted his attempts to acquire what he believed were thousands of emails stolen from Mrs. Clinton’s private email server. He implied that Lt. Gen. Michael Flynn, then serving as the senior national security adviser to presidential candidate Donald Trump, was aware of his efforts…

…The police report said Mr. Smith was found by a hotel clerk with a plastic bag around his head attached tightly with black rubber bands. Mr. Smith “left documentation on why he committed suicide, medical records, his written obituary, and life insurance” on a table in his room, the report said.

OMG

Massachusetts Man Arrested After Trying To Hire
A Hit Man On Twitter To Kill ICE Agents For $500

A 33-year-old lefty from Cambridge, Massachusetts named Brandon Ziobrowski was arrested Thursday after offering anyone on Twitter $500 to kill ICE agents.

Ziobrowski also expressed his desire to slit John McCain’s throat in several tweets.

FOX News reported:

A Massachusetts man was arrested in New York on Thursday after trying to hire a hit man on Twitter to kill ICE agents for $500 and sharing his desire to slit the throat of Sen. John McCain, federal officials said.

The U.S. Attorney’s Office for the District of Massachusetts said that Brandon Ziobrowski, 33, from Cambridge, Mass. was charged with one count of use of interstate and foreign commerce to transmit a threat and injure another person for the alleged Twitter posts this year.

Federal officials said Ziobrowski tweeted a murder for hire solicitation to kill Immigration and Customs Enforcement agents for $500, and repeatedly tweeted his desire to slit the throat of McCain, R-Ariz.

“The agents and officers out there enforcing federal laws are doing their job, plain and simple,” U.S. Attorney Andrew Lelling said at a news conference. “There is a difference between public debate and putting others in fear of their lives.”

Federal officials said Ziobrowski in March started tweeting threatening messages against federal agents that work for ICE.

On July 2, the 33-year-old allegedly tweeted: “I am broke but will scrounge and literally give $500 to anyone who kills ICE agent. @me seriously who else can pledge get in on this lets make this work.”

The Justice Department released a statement on the arrest of Ziobrowski:

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