One of the most striking and unprecedented things about the current transition is the President-elect’s disdain for the intelligence community. A disconnect between the various US intelligence agencies and Mr Trump puts United States national security at risk.
A potential president vs. intelligence community feud is one of the worst possible things that could happen under the new administration. Imagine if Trump were to release confidential information to spite the intelligence community. Would you really put it past him to do that? I wouldn’t. He is unable to let go of a grudge, and the day Donald Trump “takes the high road” is the day hell freezes over.
Given Mr Trump’s various connections to Russia, it is also feasible to imagine that Mr Trump could feed confidential information to the Russians.
One of the strangest trends that I’ve noticed on social media is the Trump base’s hypocrisy when it comes to the FBI and CIA. When James Comey and the FBI went public with their second investigation of Hillary Clinton, Fox News commentators ate it up, and Trump’s stump speeches at campaign stops were full of references to “Crooked Hillary”. Now, however, that the FBI and CIA are showing connections between the Russian government and Mr Trump, they are “untrustworthy and dishonest”.
Russia wins in all this because a) Hillary Clinton was delegitimized and therefore the Putin-friendly candidate won the election, and b) Donald Trump’s supporters don’t believe the allegations that Mr Trump’s campaign staff met with Russian officials or that Russia has compromising information regarding Mr Trump. In the end, there is too much media attention (especially from Fox News) on past mistakes of the intelligence communities (Iraq, for example) in an effort to show how “dishonest” they are, and Russia has managed to stay almost entirely under the radar. People are distracted by the talking heads on Hannity’s show, and don’t understand that a foreign government has interfered with our sovereignty.