“Former CIA Director John Brennan reveals in a forthcoming book and interview that there was internal division at the spy agency over the level of confidence in an intelligence assessment that Vladimir Putin directed Russia’s election interference in the U.S. specifically to help Donald Trump.
According to The New York Times, Brennan describes in his memoir and in an unaired interview that two senior CIA officials pushed back in early 2017 against analysts’ assessment that they had a high level of confidence about Putin’s motives.
The officials lobbied Brennan for a medium-level confidence rating for the intelligence.
“They came up and talked to me about it and I listened to them because I wanted to make sure I understood exactly what their concerns were,” Brennan told C-SPAN in an interview yet to be aired. “And I encouraged them to talk to the authors of the assessment and determine if the judgment should stay at high confidence or medium confidence.”
(…) Brennan downplayed the internal dispute and also denied altering the CIA’s assessment, as some Republicans and Trump allies have suggested.
“I didn’t change a single analytic judgment in that intelligence community assessment,” he said in the C-SPAN interview, according to the Times. Brennan asserted that the CIA ultimately adopted the analysts’ assessment of Putin’s motives, rather than the opposing view supported by the two CIA officials.
Brennan’s remarks are the first time he’s publicly acknowledged that there was some disagreement within the CIA about the intelligence on Russia’s election interference.” (Read more: The Daily Caller, 10/03/2020) (Archive)