12:34 PM 5/16/2017 – 'Golf, glitz and gluttony are the key' – SATIRE: Vladmir Putin, in quest of easy secrets, sets his golfers and flatterers on to Donald Trump

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trump cartoons – Google Search

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How lawmakers are reacting to report…

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How lawmakers are reacting to report of Trump sharing classified intel with Russian officials

PBS NewsHour – ‎12 hours ago‎
Senator Bob Corker, R-Tenn. speaks to reporters May 10 at the U.S. Capitol in Washington, D.C. Photo by Joshua Roberts/Reuters. Congressional Republicans and Democrats expressed concern Monday night over reports that President Donald Trump …

Trump revealed intelligence secrets to Russians in Oval Office: officials

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WASHINGTON President Donald Trump disclosed highly classified information to Russia’s foreign minister about a planned Islamic State operation, two U.S. officials said on Monday, plunging the White House into another controversy just months into Trump

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This handout photo released by the Russian Ministry of Foreign Affairs, shows President Donald Trump meeting with Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov in the Oval Office of the White House in Washington, Wednesday, May 10, 2017. The Washington …

OnPolitics Today: Who needs spies when the president might tell you himself?

USA TODAY – ‎15 hours ago‎
It was shaping up to be a quiet Monday, OnPolitics peeps. And then this happened: The Washington Post broke a major story about President Trump reportedly revealing CLASSIFIED INFORMATION to the RUSSIANS. The White House, of course, is denying …

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As the White House was engulfed by a crisis of its own making — the abrupt firing of the FBI director — President Trump received an unlikely visitor: Henry Kissinger, the Republican Party’s leading elder statesman, who came to deliver a tutorial on
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‘Golf, glitz and gluttony are the key’

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SATIRE

Vladmir Putin, in quest of easy secrets, sets his golfers and flatterers on to Donald Trump

Tony Wright

Vladimir Putin has ordered his leading US-based intelligence operatives to rush to Greg Norman outfitters’ outlets and to make permanent reservations at the Mar-a-Lago restaurant in Florida.

“Forget all the skulking and working confidential sources and organising dead-drops and writing in invisible ink and playing Mata Hari,” Putin commanded. “We’ll never have to pay another ruble to traitors.

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Trump reveals secrets to Russia: Officials

President Donald Trump disclosed highly classified information to the Russian foreign minister during their meeting last week, two US officials with knowledge of the situation say.

“All we have to do is get tight with glupyy* Donald.

“Golf, glitz and gluttony are the key.

“Flatter him, tell him his tee-shot is the best, and when you’re dining at his Lago place, catch his eye, tell him his daughter really has the tightest glutes and whisper a suggestion about what might happen to Alex Baldwin if he tried his rubbish on Moscow’s Saturday night TV. Make it graphic. Entrails.

“He’ll be all over you like a special escort at the Hotel Ritz Carlton at Red Square.”

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Mr Putin’s order to drop old-style fieldcraft in favour of recreational socialising at the top follows the revelation that Donald Trump merrily revealed highly classified information, including jeopardising a critical source relating to ISIS, during a meeting with the Russian Foreign Minister and the Russian Ambassador.

“Imagine,” said Putin, setting down a 200 kilogram barbell he’d been using for bicep curls. “He just invited them into the White House and spilled the corn.”

“Beans, your Fabulousness,” offered a nervous aide.

“Thank you. Now remove yourself to the cellar at the Lubyanka, you weeping sore,” snapped Putin.

“All that effort by our cyber patriots, our hacker army, our friends in WikiLeaks. Our extremely special services at the Ritz. Our infiltrations and helpful business deals with friends of friends.

“We never needed any of it.

“That Hollywood fraud Reagan said he’d won the Cold War. Such vanity. Such typical Yankee Running Dog hastiness.

“We’ve emerged victorious! We needed only wait for the duraki*. The kretin*. Our friend. Donald!

“The man who’ll hand us all the secrets and think he’s doing great.

“Get our teams to the golfing clinics. Grease the waiters at Mar-a-Lago. Make extra appointments for our diplomats at the White House.

“But hurry! Make all haste. Before his idioty* supporters finally understand what they’ve got to do.

“Now, hand me the the Kalashnikov. There are bear to hunt.”

*Russian words all roughly meaning “moron”.

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“Maybe the Russians were the leakers!” Fox News offered a master class on spin Monday night. – Vox

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The right-wing media teaches us how to downplay a scandal.

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Trump Says He Has ‘Absolute Right’ To…

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Trump Says He Has ‘Absolute Right’ To Share Intelligence With Russia

NPR – ‎40 minutes ago‎
President Trump is responding to the backlash against the allegations that he shared “highly classified” information with the Russians by saying he had “the absolute right to do” so. He tweeted this morning: As President I wanted to share with Russia

Can President Donald Trump share top secret information?

BBC News – ‎4 hours ago‎
Donald Trump has once again found himself at the centre of a storm – this time for reportedly sharing “codeword classified” information with the Russian ambassador. The information, which related to the use of laptops on aircraft, is understood to have

Trump confirms he shared information with Russia

Business Insider – ‎3 hours ago‎
Donald Trump Jeff Sessions President Donald Trump before speaking at the 36th Annual National Peace Officers’ memorial service Monday in Washington. AP Photo/Evan Vucci. President Donald Trump has appeared to confirm a Washington Post report …

Trump claims he has ‘absolute right’ to share intelligence with the Russians

Politico – ‎2 hours ago‎
President Donald Trump on Tuesday morning claimed he has “the absolute right” to share intelligence with the Russian government, while doing little to deny that he allegedly divulged highly classified information to a foreign adversary during an Oval

“Maybe the Russians were the leakers!” Fox News offered a master class on spin Monday night.

Vox – ‎43 minutes ago‎
Just after 5 pm on Monday, the Washington Post released a bombshell report alleging that President Donald Trump shared an ally’s “highly classified” information with Russian officials at the White House last week. By 6 pm, Fox News had assembled an …
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Trump and Putin exchange top secret information through Russian FM Lavrov

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Trump and Putin exchanged top secret information through Russian FM Lavrov. 60482.jpegAP photo

US President Donald Trump handed over secret data to Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov and Russian ambassador to the US Sergei Kislyak during the visit of the Russian delegation to Washington, reports The Washington Post.

The information concerned Islamic State (ISIL) terrorist organisation (banned in Russia). Thus, President Trump jeopardised the source in the United States that had provided information to the US administration about the terrorists.

The US administration obtained the information through a secret data exchange mechanism. Messages in the mechanism are only available to a limited number of people in US power structures, not to mention the fact that the US does not disclose any information from the source to its allies. However, Trump has decided to break the tradition, without receiving permission from the source.

It was reported that US officials took urgent measures to curb the damage by contacting the CIA and the National Security Agency.

Later, however, the US refuted the transfer of secret information to Lavrov. US Secretary of State Rex Tillerson said that President Trump discussed only the nature of specific threats with Lavrov.

During his visit to Washington, Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov conveyed a message from Russian President Putin to US President Trump. The Kremlin confirmed the information adding that the contacts between the head of the Russian Foreign Ministry and the US president were carried out during the conversation that took place between the leaders of the two states. No further details were revealed.

UPDATE: Officials spokesperson for the Russian Ministry for Foreign Affairs, Maria Zakharova, said that the above-mentioned article in The Washington Post about the exchange of secret information between Putin and Trump was fake news that deserves no attention.

Pravda.Ru

Read article on the Russian version of Pravda.Ru

Which business Putin and Trump contrive

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Someone has to yank President Trump’s security clearance

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This handout photo released by the Russian Ministry of Foreign Affairs, shows President Donald Trump meeting with Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov in the Oval Office of the White House in Washington, Wednesday, May 10, 2017. The Washington Post is reporting that Trump revealed highly classified information about Islamic State militants to Russian officials during a meeting at the White House last week. The newspaper cites current and former U.S. officials who say Trump jeopardized a critical source of intelligence on IS in his conversations with the Russian foreign minister and the Russian ambassador to the U.S. They say Trump offered details about an IS terror threat related to the use of laptop computers on aircraft.(Russian Foreign Ministry via AP)

President Donald Trump is spilling secrets big league.

RELATED: Sorry, folks, this is not Watergate — yet

President Trump revealed highly classified information to two Russian diplomats in the Oval office last week.

The report implied it happened as he was bragging about how great our intel is.

Now, it may turn out to have been a carefully calculated, highly strategic move that will enhance our national security like you’ve never seen.

But whatever he disclosed, it has left even some Republicans worried that our allies and even the CIA itself are just not going to send sensitive information to the White House anymore.

There’s only one solution: Someone has to yank his security clearance.

You say, Dave, who is going to yank the president’s security clearance?

President Trump should.

“Why are these people with great knowledge of the inner workings of our country and security, why are they giving Hillary Clinton briefings?” he said July 27, 2016.

He understands the importance of keeping your mouth shut.

“I know, at some point, they’re going to be calling and they’re going to want to brief me, but I’m not a talker about this stuff,” he explained.

Trump was determined to save us from someone who simply stored a secret improperly.

“I don’t think it’s safe to have Hillary Clinton be briefed on national security because the word will get out.”

Trump must now yank his own security clearance for 90 days until he can undergo extreme vetting.

But Dave, you say, that’s silly! Just impeach him!

Sorry. The standard for impeachment in America is lying about sex under oath. Say what you want, this president has been more than candid when it comes to sex.

More from Dave Ross

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Russia denies Trump shared classified information

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Analysis: Trump intel sharing risks damaging US alliances

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WASHINGTON (AP) — For months, U.S. allies have anxiously wondered if President Donald Trump could be trusted with some of the world’s most sensitive national security secrets.

Now, just a few days before Trump’s debut on the international stage, he’s giving allies new reasons to worry. A U.S. official said Trump revealed highly classified information about an Islamic State plot to senior Russian officials during an Oval Office meeting last week. The information had been obtained by a U.S. partner and shared with Washington, according to the official.

“If it proves to be true that the American president passed on internal intelligence matters, that would be highly worrying,” Burkhard Lischka, a senior German lawmaker, said in a statement to The Associated Press.

A second European official told the AP that their country might stop sharing intelligence with the United States as a result of Trump’s disclosure to Russia.

The revelations — which Trump appeared to verify in a pair of tweets Tuesday morning — are sure to shadow the president as he embarks Friday on his first overseas trip as president. After high-stakes visits to Saudi Arabia, Israel and the Vatican, he’ll meet some of Washington’s strongest European partners at a NATO summit in Brussels and the Group of 7 meeting in Sicily. Some of the leaders he’ll meet come from countries the U.S. has intelligence-sharing agreements with.

Sen. John McCain, a Republican from Arizona, said Trump actions send “a troubling signal to America’s allies and partners around the world and may impair their willingness to share intelligence with us in the future.”

Trump has a contentious relationship with American spy agencies. He’s questioned the competence of intelligence officials, challenged their assessment that Russia meddled in last year’s election to help him win, and accused them of leaking information about him and his associates.

The leaks have only continued to flow.

According to the U.S. official, Trump shared details with top Russian officials about an Islamic State terror threat related to the use of laptop computers on aircraft. The Washington Post first reported the disclosure.

White House officials disputed the report, saying Trump did not disclose intelligence sources or methods with the Russians, though they did not deny that classified information was disclosed in the May 10 meeting. And by Tuesday morning, Trump was justifying his actions, writing on Twitter that he had an “absolute right” to share the information about “terrorism and airline flight safety” with Russia.”

The U.S. and Western officials spoke on the condition of anonymity in order to discuss sensitive information.

The White House has looked to Trump’s trip abroad as a moment to draw the president out of Washington’s hyper-partisan hothouse and put him in a more statesman-like setting. He’s expected to be warmly received by Arab allies in Saudi Arabia, who welcomed his decision to launch missiles against a Syrian air base following a chemical weapons attack, and in Israel, where Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu views Trump as more favorable to his interests than former President Barack Obama.

But some of the European partners Trump will meet later in his trip have been more skeptical about his policies, including a controversial travel and immigration ban that’s been blocked by U.S. courts. Western allies, including Britain and Germany, have also been wary of Trump’s warmness toward Russian President Vladimir Putin, who was kicked out of the summit of leading economic powers after Moscow’s annexation of territory from Ukraine.

The White House’s botched handling of Trump’s firing last week of FBI Director James Comey, who was overseeing the bureau’s Russia probe, and the president’s own volatile statements about his actions are also likely to raise questions among allies about the U.S. leader’s standing.

Anthony Cordesman, a national security expert at the Center for Strategic and International Studies, said allies will be trying to size up Trump’s “actual political strength relative to the divisions with Congress, the problems within his own party.”

“Can he move forward with his own agenda? That will certainly be a question as he visits any country overseas,” Cordesman said.

___

Editor’s Note: Julie Pace has covered the White House and politics for The Associated Press since 2007. Follow her at <a href=”http://twitter.com/jpaceDC” rel=”nofollow”>http://twitter.com/jpaceDC</a>

An AP News Analysis

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European official to AP: Country might stop sharing intel with U.S.

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President Donald Trump was informed that he had broken protocol. | Getty

By Associated Press

A senior European intelligence official told the Associated Press that his country might stop sharing information with the United States if it confirms that President Donald Trump shared classified details with Russian officials.

Such sharing “could be a risk for our sources,” the official said.

Story Continued Below

The official spoke only on condition that neither he nor his country be identified, because he was not authorized to discuss the matter publicly.

At the White House, Trump said in his tweets, “I wanted to share with Russia (at an openly scheduled W.H. meeting) which I have the absolute right to do, facts pertaining … to terrorism and airline flight safety. Humanitarian reasons, plus I want Russia to greatly step up their fight against ISIS & terrorism.”

Trump shared details about an Islamic State terror threat related to the use of laptop computers on aircraft with Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov and Russian ambassador to the U.S. Sergey Kislyak, a senior U.S official told AP. The classified information had been shared with the president by an ally, violating the confidentiality of an intelligence-sharing agreement with that country, the official said.

Trump later was informed that he had broken protocol and White House officials placed calls to the National Security Agency and the CIA looking to minimize any damage.

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

The disclosure put a source of intelligence on the Islamic State at risk, according to The Washington Post, which first reported the disclosure on Monday.

The CIA and the Office of the Director of National Intelligence have declined to comment.

Trump Says He Has ‘Absolute Right’ To…

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Trump Says He Has ‘Absolute Right’ To Share Intelligence With Russia

NPR – ‎19 minutes ago‎
President Trump is responding to the backlash against the allegations that he shared “highly classified” information with the Russians by saying he had “the absolute right to do” so. He tweeted this morning: As President I wanted to share with Russia

Trump defends ‘absolute right’ to share ‘facts’ with Russia

BBC News – ‎3 hours ago‎
US President Donald Trump has defended his “absolute right” to share information with Russia, following a row over classified material. Mr Trump tweeted that he had shared “facts pertaining to terrorism and airline safety” and wanted Russia to do more …

Can President Donald Trump share top secret information?

BBC News – ‎3 hours ago‎
Donald Trump has once again found himself at the centre of a storm – this time for reportedly sharing “codeword classified” information with the Russian ambassador. The information, which related to the use of laptops on aircraft, is understood to have

Trump confirms he shared information with Russia

Business Insider – ‎3 hours ago‎
Donald Trump Jeff Sessions President Donald Trump before speaking at the 36th Annual National Peace Officers’ memorial service Monday in Washington. AP Photo/Evan Vucci. President Donald Trump has appeared to confirm a Washington Post report …

Trump says he has “absolute right” to share facts with Russians

Reuters – ‎49 minutes ago‎
WASHINGTON U.S. President Donald Trump on Tuesday defended having disclosed information to senior Russian officials last week, saying he had an “absolute right” to do so and had shared facts to get Moscow to step up its fight against the Islamic State …
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laptops airplanes – Google Search

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Story image for laptops airplanes from Los Angeles Times

A laptop ban on planes will make flying even more like going to prison

Los Angeles TimesMay 11, 2017
Just when you thought flying on commercial airliners couldn’t get any more miserable, consider this: you may be banned from bringing your …
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US, UK ban laptops, tablets on airplanes: What’s the threat? – Times of India

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Can President Donald Trump share top…

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Can President Donald Trump share top secret information?

BBC News – ‎2 hours ago‎
Donald Trump has once again found himself at the centre of a storm – this time for reportedly sharing “codeword classified” information with the Russian ambassador. The information, which related to the use of laptops on aircraft, is understood to have

Trump confirms he shared information with Russia

Business Insider – ‎2 hours ago‎
Donald Trump Jeff Sessions President Donald Trump before speaking at the 36th Annual National Peace Officers’ memorial service Monday in Washington. AP Photo/Evan Vucci. President Donald Trump has appeared to confirm a Washington Post report …

Trump claims ‘absolute right’ to share info with Russia

<a href=”http://WRAL.com” rel=”nofollow”>WRAL.com</a> – ‎33 minutes ago‎
WASHINGTON — President Donald Trump on Tuesday claimed the authority to share “facts pertaining to terrorism” and airline safety with Russia, saying in a pair of tweets he has “an absolute right” as president to do so. Trump’s tweets did not say

Trump claims he has ‘absolute right’ to share intelligence with the Russians

Politico – ‎1 hour ago‎
President Donald Trump on Tuesday morning claimed he has “the absolute right” to share intelligence with the Russian government, while doing little to deny that he allegedly divulged highly classified information to a foreign adversary during an Oval

Russian Foreign Ministry: no classified information from Trump

Fox5NY – ‎2 hours ago‎
WASHINGTON (AP) — Russia’s foreign ministry spokesman has denied reports that President Donald Trump revealed classified information to senior officials during the Russian minister’s visit to the Oval Office last week. Maria Zakharova, spokeswoman for …
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Can President Donald Trump share top…

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Can President Donald Trump share top secret information?

BBC News – ‎2 hours ago‎
Donald Trump has once again found himself at the centre of a storm – this time for reportedly sharing “codeword classified” information with the Russian ambassador. The information, which related to the use of laptops on aircraft, is understood to have

Trump confirms he shared information with Russia

Business Insider – ‎1 hour ago‎
Donald Trump Jeff Sessions President Donald Trump before speaking at the 36th Annual National Peace Officers’ memorial service Monday in Washington. AP Photo/Evan Vucci. President Donald Trump has appeared to confirm a Washington Post report …

Trump defends sharing terrorism ‘facts’ with Russians

<a href=”http://WRAL.com” rel=”nofollow”>WRAL.com</a> – ‎12 minutes ago‎
WASHINGTON — President Donald Trump on Tuesday claimed the authority to share “facts pertaining to terrorism” and airline safety with Russia, saying in a pair of tweets he has “an absolute right” as president to do so. Trump’s tweets did not say

Trump claims he has ‘absolute right’ to share intelligence with the Russians

Politico – ‎51 minutes ago‎
President Donald Trump on Tuesday morning claimed he has “the absolute right” to share intelligence with the Russian government, while doing little to deny that he allegedly divulged highly classified information to a foreign adversary during an Oval

Russian Foreign Ministry: no classified information from Trump

Fox5NY – ‎2 hours ago‎
WASHINGTON (AP) — Russia’s foreign ministry spokesman has denied reports that President Donald Trump revealed classified information to senior officials during the Russian minister’s visit to the Oval Office last week. Maria Zakharova, spokeswoman for …
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Can President Donald Trump share top secret information?

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Donald Trump has once again found himself at the centre of a storm – this time for reportedly sharing “codeword classified” information with the Russian ambassador.

The information, which related to the use of laptops on aircraft, is understood to have been passed to the Americans by an ally who had apparently chosen not to share it with Moscow.

It was marked “codeword classified”, and was highly sensitive.

Mr Trump has now said he “had the absolute right” to tell the Russians “acts pertaining to terrorism and airline safety”.

So what are the rules around confidential information, and does he really have the right?

What is classification?

According to an executive order signed by Barack Obama in 2009, something is considered classified if “the national defence has required that certain information be maintained in confidence in order to protect our citizens, our democratic institutions, our homeland security, and our interactions with foreign nations”.

Once it is classified, the sharing of that material could lead to prosecution. However, there is no law against it.

What do the different levels of classification mean?

There are three different levels of classification

  • Top secret is the highest level, and is information the government believes could “reasonably… be expected to cause exceptionally grave damage to the national security”. According to The Economist, about 1.4 million people have access to these documents.
  • Secret is for information which could “reasonably… be expected to cause serious damage”.
  • Confidential applies to information which could simply “cause damage to the national security”. Most military personnel have this level of clearance.

However, there is also a way to add a second level of clearance to top secret. It is administered by the CIA, and allows only those with the codeword access to the information. The material discussed by Mr Trump with the Russians was under a codeword, sources told the Washington Post.

These classifications are given by either the US president, vice-president, but more usually the heads of the various intelligence agencies.

How do things get ‘declassified’?

When the classification is set, a timescale for declassification is set. In some cases, it may be an event which will signal that the information can now be made public, in others an actual date. If neither of these things are obvious, it will be automatically set for 10 years’ time. However, it could also be kept classified for 25 years.

Importantly, no information should be classified indefinitely.

Is there a presidential loophole?

In short, yes.

Declassification before the agreed time – or even just downgrading its classification level – is a decision for the person who originally gave the information that level of security, their successor or supervisor. The Director of National Intelligence can downgrade or declassify an item, after consultation with the relevant heads of department.

However, the rules for classification are considered part of the president’s constitutional powers – so if he wants to declassify something, he can, according to the New York Times.

Steven Aftergood, a government secrecy specialist with the Federation of American Scientists, explained to the newspaper: “It is an expression of presidential authority, and that means that the president and his designees decide what is classified, and they have the essentially unlimited authority to declassify at will.

“The president defines the terms of the security clearance system and the parameters that determine who may be given access to classified information.”

What would happen if anyone else shared confidential information?

In theory, they would lose their security clearance, or even end up in prison, prosecuted under the espionage laws. Edward Snowden leaked top secret information, and ended up seeking asylum in Russia in order to avoid prosecution.

But it seems there is no hard and fast rule: American news site The Hill pointed out last year that the punishments seemed to vary based on who you were, not the information you leaked.

What does this mean for intelligence sharing in the future?

If Mr Trump has shared highly sensitive information, he has broken a “golden rule”, the BBC’s security correspondent Frank Gardner has said.

“There is a golden rule in the world of espionage that when one government supplies intelligence to another it must not be passed on to a third party without permission of the original supplier,” he said.

“The reason is simple: it could put the lives of their human informants at risk.”

But will this make US allies think twice about sharing information with their American counterparts?

Potentially not. Some in the international community have already sought to play down the implications of what Mr Trump may or may not have done.

New Zealand’s foreign affairs minister Gerry Brownlee said Russia and the US needed to work closely together, and cited the Trump administration’s denial of the story.

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TASS: Russian Politics & Diplomacy

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MOSCOW, May 16. /TASS/. The Washington Post’s report saying that US President Donald Trump had revealed classified information to Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov during their White House meeting is part of the political pressure that the Trump administration has been facing, Russian Foreign Ministry Spokeswoman Maria Zakharova said.

“It is part of the campaign which began before the US presidential election and has been going on since then,” she said in an interview with the Russian Kommersant FM radio station. “This is another attempt to exert pressure on the new US administration and make deals related to various political appointments and lobbying. We can’t even say now that the media are biased because they are openly fulfilling a political order,” the Russian diplomat added.

According to Zakharova, the Washington Post did not provide evidence to back up allegations about some classified information revelation. “The article mentions no evidence, it is based on information received from some sources. Actually, there is a typical pattern concerning the way that such articles come out and the response that they get,” the Russian Foreign Ministry spokeswoman pointed out.

The Washington Post said earlier that “President Trump revealed highly classified information to the Russian foreign minister and ambassador in a White House meeting last week, according to current and former US officials, who said Trump’s disclosures jeopardized a critical source of intelligence on the Islamic State.”

Israelis Nervous About Sharing Intel With Trump After Russia Gaffe

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Israel is on edge following a late Monday night bombshell report in the Washington Post that said President Donald Trump had “spontaneously” revealed espionage secrets to the Russians last week in a move that, if confirmed, could endanger the American war on terror abroad.

The highly classified intelligence is believed to pertain to Jordan, a critical U.S. ally who has been at the forefront of fighting the Islamic State, and the use of laptop computers to bomb airplanes. It was given up during a meeting with Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov and the Russian ambassador in the Oval Office last week, current and former American government officials told the Washington Post. It seems that Trump spontaneously blurted out, “I get great intel. I have people brief me on great intel every day,” without taking into account moves to increase U.S. leverage against the Russians, who hold opposing interests in the war in Syria.

“Some within the [Israeli] government are very concerned by the signs coming out from Washington: that there’s not exactly a shift in regards to Israel and the region, but there are certainly unexpected signs which are very different from what we expected” from Trump the candidate, said Oded Eran, a former Israeli ambassador to Jordan and fellow at the Institute for National Security Studies in Tel Aviv. He said that Israel still sees the U.S. as a critical security ally with which it pursues cooperation, but that it has also been developing security agreements with India and other Asian countries.

Trump is scheduled to speak with King Abdullah of Jordan on Tuesday, spurring speculation that the classified information, which was so sensitive that it was not widely shared with American officials or with other allies, belonged to the Jordanians.

Since Trump took office in January, Israeli intelligence officials have been re-assessing their intelligence sharing strategies, worried that any information passed on to Trump could be leaked to Russia and onward to Iran, which backs its proxy Hezbollah in Lebanon. Hezbollah’s leader Hassan Nasrallah said earlier this month that Damascus, Moscow, Tehran and Hezbollah were “in more harmony politically and militarily than at any time.”

In closed-door meetings, American intelligence officials “warned” their Israeli counterparts about sharing classified information to Trump, given the president’s suspicious relationship with Russia, according to a report by Ronen Bergman in the Israeli daily Yediot Ahronot.

“American officials have said that they believe the Kremlin to have ‘leverages of pressure’ over Trump,” wrote Bergman, who added that U.S.-Israel intelligence cooperation has been increasing over the past decade, targeting Iran and, in some cases, Hezbollah in Lebanon and Hamas in Gaza.

“If Israel’s secrets are not secure in the hands of the American spy agencies, that would cause a very serious danger to the security of the state of Israel,” he wrote.

Constitutional law scholar Alan Dershowitz said in an interview on MSNBC that Trump did not break the law in revealing the information to the Russians, since the president is authorized to declassify government secrets as he sees fit, and so the allegations would not be grounds for impeachment. But if the Washington Post report is confirmed, the act would be even more serious than the crimes usually under debate in discussions of impeachment, he said.

Trump’s leak to the Russians “could compromise sources and methods and also result in a cutoff of information from American allies to the United States, as the result of which we would all suffer and be in danger,” said Dershowitz.

The White House press team has not answered any questions regarding the revelation, besides saying that “this story is false. The president only discussed the common threats that both countries faced,” Deputy National Security Adviser Dina Powell said on Monday night in an official statement.

The latest chapter in the Russia saga comes as Trump faces rising pressure on the question of his campaign’s possible collusion with the Russian government. Trump’s abrupt dismissal of FBI director James Comey has not halted the FBI investigation into the issue, which the issuing of grand jury subpoenas indicate is charging forward into the next, more serious phases. The Washington Post or other news organizations may also release further details, which are being withheld on the request of officials who said that their secrecy was needed to protect American intelligence capabilities.

The dramatic is also overshadowing Trump’s first international visit to Saudi Arabia, Israel, and the Vatican.

In Israel, chaos is already reigning, after a U.S. official on Monday told his Israeli counterparts that the Western Wall, a holy site in Jerusalem, is “not your territory.” Trump’s Middle East envoy Jason Greenblatt, who landed in Israel on Monday, has reportedly advised the Israelis to “refrain from getting into confrontations with the president and to help him implement his Middle Eastern policies.”

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The Latest: German lawmaker questions Trump as security risk – SFGate

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pdated 6:02 am, Tuesday, May 16, 2017

WASHINGTON (AP) — The Latest on the report that President Donald Trump shared classified information with Russian officials (all times EDT):

8:25 a.m.

A senior German lawmaker has expressed concern about reports that President Donald Trump revealed highly classified information about the Islamic State group to Russian officials.

Burkhard Lischka said in a statement to The Associated Press that “if it proves to be true that the American president passed on internal intelligence matters that would be highly worrying.”

Lischka, who sits on the German parliament’s intelligence oversight committee, noted that Trump has access to “exclusive and highly sensitive information including in the area of combating terrorism.”

The Social Democratic Party lawmaker said that if the U.S. president “passes this information to other governments at will, then Trump becomes a security risk for the entire western world.”

President Trump reportedly revealed highly classified information about ISIS to Russian foreign minister during their meeting last week. Trump disclosed details about a plot to use laptop computers in terror attacks to Sergei Lavrov. The information was believed to be provided to Trump by an American ally through an intelligence sharing arrangement. The Washington Post said the intelligence partner did not give permission for the information to be shared with Russia.

Media: Wibbitz

Germany is heavily dependent on U.S. intelligence.

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8:25 a.m.

The Kremlin has dismissed reports that Donald Trump shared classified information with Russian officials last week as “complete nonsense.”

The Washington Post‘s report on Monday claimed that the revelation made by Trump during his meeting with visiting Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov put a source of intelligence on the Islamic State at risk.

Russian presidential spokesman Dmitry Peskov on Tuesday dismissed the reports as “yet more nonsense” and said that Moscow doesn’t “want to have to do anything with it,” adding that “there is nothing to confirm or deny.”

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7:25 a.m.

President Donald Trump is using Twitter to defend his sharing of information with the Russians.

Trump says he wanted to share with Russia “facts pertaining to terrorism and airline flight safety.” He notes that as president, he has an “absolute right” to do this.

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The Washington Post reported Monday that Trump divulged highly classified “code-word” information that could enable the Russians to trace the source of the intelligence.

Trump added a line in his tweet suggesting why he did it: “Humanitarian reasons, plus I want Russia to greatly step up their fight against ISIS & terrorism.”

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6:40 a.m.

Russia’s foreign ministry spokesman has denied reports that President Donald Trump revealed classified information to senior officials during the Russian minister’s visit to the Oval Office last week.

The Washington Post reported on Monday that the revelation put a source of intelligence on the Islamic State at risk.

Maria Zakharova, spokeswoman for the Russian foreign ministry, on Facebook on Tuesday described the reports as “yet another fake.”

The reports came several days after the White House faced criticism for a possible security breach after it allowed a Russian news service photographer into the Oval Office to snap photos of Trump with Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov and Russian Ambassador Sergey Kislyak last week.

—Associated Press reporter Paisley Dodds in London.

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4:30 a.m.

Jordan says King Abdullah II is to speak by phone Tuesday with President Donald Trump.

The Royal Court says arrangements for the call were made last week.

The conversation will take place amid a report by The Washington Post that Trump revealed highly classified information to senior Russian officials at a meeting last week, putting a source of intelligence about the Islamic State extremist group at risk.

Jordan is a key ally in the U.S.-led international military coalition against Islamic State, which controls territory in neighboring Syria and Iraq.

The Post, citing current and former U.S. officials, says Trump shared details about an Islamic State terror threat related to the use of laptop computers on aircraft with Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov and Russian Ambassador to the U.S. Sergey Kislyak.

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3:30 a.m.

Australian Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull won’t comment on a Washington Post report that President Donald Trump revealed classified information to Russian officials, or say whether the report will affect Australia’s intelligence-sharing agreement with the U.S.

Australia is a member of the Five Eyes intelligence-sharing program with the U.S., Canada, Britain and New Zealand.

Turnbull declined to comment specifically on the report, but said during an interview Tuesday with Adelaide radio station 5AA that he is confident in the Australia-U.S. alliance. Turnbull called it “the bedrock of our national security.”

New Zealand’s Foreign Affairs Minister Gerry Brownlee said in a statement that the report was rejected by senior U.S. officials. Brownlee said a resolution to the situation in Syria requires a concerted effort from the U.S. and Russia. Brownlee said he hopes the meeting between Trump and Russian Foreign Minister Lavrov “is a step towards that.”

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3:13 a.m.

President Donald Trump revealed highly classified information to senior Russian officials during an Oval Office meeting last week, putting a source of intelligence on the Islamic State at risk, The Washington Post reported.

The disclosure late Monday drew strong condemnation from Democrats and a rare rebuke of Trump from some Republican lawmakers. White House officials denounced the report, saying the president did not disclose intelligence sources or methods to the Russians, though officials did not deny that classified information was disclosed in the May 10 meeting.

H.R. McMaster, Trump’s national security adviser, said: “The president and the foreign minister reviewed a range of common threats to our two countries including threats to civil aviation. At no time, at no time were intelligence sources or methods discussed and the president did not disclose any military operations that were not already publicly known.”

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This is why Trump’s loose tongue has…

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This is why Trump’s loose tongue has compromised US security

Washington Post – ‎13 minutes ago‎
Monday night, The Washington Post reported that President Trump revealed highly classified information to the Russian foreign minister and ambassador during a meeting at the White House. Specifically, he is said to have described the details of an

Defiant Trump says he had ‘absolute right’ to share information with Russia

CNN – ‎1 hour ago‎
Washington (CNN) President Donald Trump insisted Tuesday he had the right to share information with Russia related to terrorism and other issues, his first public response to the revelation he disclosed classified information at an Oval Office meeting

Trump acknowledges ‘facts’ shared with Russian envoys during White House meeting

Washington Post – ‎59 minutes ago‎
President Trump appeared to acknowledge Tuesday that he revealed highly classified information to Russia — a stunning confirmation of a Washington Post story and a move that contradicted his own White House team after it scrambled to deny the report.

Donald Trump Defends Sharing Intelligence With Russia

New York Times – ‎1 hour ago‎
A White House television showed a news report on Monday about President Trump’s recent Oval Office meeting with Russian officials. Credit Jonathan Ernst/Reuters. WASHINGTON — President Donald J. Trump said early Tuesday that he had an “absolute …

Trump defends sharing terrorism ‘facts’ with Russians

Washington Post – ‎27 minutes ago‎
WASHINGTON — President Donald Trump on Tuesday defended his right to share “facts pertaining to terrorism” and airline safety with Russia, saying in a pair of tweets he has “an absolute right” as president to do so. Trump’s tweets did not say whether
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Hourly News Summary: NPR News: 05-16-2017 12AM ET


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