Former National Security Advisor Michael Flynn has a well deserved reputation for conspiracy thinking. Presumably he will assume that the U.S. intelligence community, including the Central Intelligence Agency, the Federal Bureau of Investigation, and the former director of National Intelligence, conducted a campaign to force his removal from the Trump administration. Ironically, the Kremlin, which has lived historically in a world of conspiracy thinking, will view the ouster of Flynn as part of a campaign by the U.S. establishment to prevent any improvement in Russian-American relations.
In this conspiratorial realm, it’s important to acknowledge at the outset that Flynn was probably the least qualified and the most questionable individual in the 70-year history of the National Security Council to be selected as the president’s sherpa for national security policy. His behavior during the presidential campaign was thoroughly unprofessional and a source of embarrassment to the military establishment and the Republican Party. His retirement from the military several years ago was engineered by the White House and the Joint Chiefs of Staff because of his failed stewardship at the Defense Intelligence Agency. He had a reputation at DIA as a polemicist, and many of his pronouncements there were derided as “Flynn facts” because they had no basis in actual fact.
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CIA Creates a Mission Center to Counter China
You have to wonder what in the world Burns’ mediocre predecessors (John Brennan and Mike Pompeo) were thinking in creating mission centers regarding Iran and North Korea which represented little threat to the United States. But my second reaction is less facetious and more serious: why is the United States—its president, its politicians, its pundits—hell-bent on creating a Cold War environment and arms race with China? Burns told his work force last week that China is “our toughest geopolitical test in a new era of great power rivalry.”