Of Security Clearances and Fainting Couches

So Trump ordered the revocation of former CIA Director John Brennan’s security clearance.

Yawn. Both side of the aisle are getting the vapors over this issue.

To begin, though an established norm – senior intelligence and law enforcement officials retaining access to classified information – POTUS is well within his rights to revoke anyone’s security clearance, at any time, for any reason. However, a key difference here is that Brennan’s clearance was not revoked for cause, but be-cause. Brennan didn’t violate [as far as we know] his life-long agreement of non-disclosure of classified information. His clearance was revoked, because he is an outspoken critic of the current POTUS.

Still legal, but proponents of this act should not lose sight of the fact that as this violates said long-standing norm, it establishes a precedent; that if a future Democrat POTUS elects to do likewise against a political opponent…..previous proponents should nary utter a peep, lest they whistle to themselves in the wind.

Sadly, the current political reality-TV paradigm that we abide under….is anything but far-sighted.

On the flip-side….in order to obtain classified information, one must have the appropriate security clearance, access and need-to-know. These former officials who maintained a security clearance typically do not have the latter two, unless specifically brought in by an Administration or an Agency…..to consult or advise on a specific, focused issue. Brennan being no different.

So, other than providing ammunition for the base, detractors and the media spin cycle…..this entire affair is a case of the vapors – on both sides.


3 thoughts on “Of Security Clearances and Fainting Couches

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