- US officials were so alarmed by President Donald Trump’s decision to reveal classified intelligence to Russian officials during an Oval Office meeting in 2017 that they extracted a top-secret source from Russia shortly after, CNN reported on Monday.
- Intelligence officials typically extract sources when they believe the person’s life is in immediate danger.
- The information Trump shared with the Russians wasn’t directly connected to the source, but CNN reported that its disclosure prompted officials to “renew earlier discussions” about the potential risk that the source would be exposed.
- The president has repeatedly been accused of mishandling classified information that could compromise the US’s intelligence-gathering methods and put lives at risk.
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A person directly involved with the discussions told the outlet the US was concerned that Trump and his administration routinely mishandled classified intelligence and that their actions could expose the covert source as a spy within the Russian government.
Trump stunned the national-security apparatus and intelligence community when it surfaced that in an Oval Office meeting in May 2017 he shared the information with Sergey Lavrov, Russia’s foreign minister, and Sergey Kislyak, then Russia’s ambassador to the US.
Trump’s disclosure was not specifically about the Russian spy. But his disregard of strict intelligence-sharing rules to protect highly placed sources “prompted intelligence officials to renew earlier discussions about the potential risk” that the source in Russya would be exposed, CNN reported. Read more