Obama aide denies using intel to spy on Trump advisers

Obama aide denies using intel to spy on Trump advisers

The latest charge is that former national security adviser Susan Rice "unmasked" - intelligence parlance for asking for the identity of unnamed officials - Trump campaign officials, proof, the President's allies insist, that something nefarious was happening on the surveillance front during the final days of the Obama administration.

"I believe Susan Rice abused this system and she did it for political purposes", Paul said on MSNBC.

As Obama's national security adviser, Rice said her job was to protect the American people and in order to do that, she said she received a compilation of intelligence reports every morning from the intelligence community to provide her team with the best information about what was going on around the world.

As a former Central Intelligence Agency analyst who has handled requests for demasking the names of American citizens for a US policymaker, I thought Rice's claims in her interview did not add up. Name not provided, just 'U.S. person.' And sometimes in that context, in order to understand the importance of the report, and assess its significance, it was necessary to find out, or request the information as to who that US official was.

"Not only did it not occur, it didn't occur and it could not occur as directed by the White House", Rice said.

Rice, who was valedictorian of her class and a star point guard on the basketball team at the National Cathedral School, exhibited "superior leadership skills" and "left behind a remarkable legacy", wrote former teacher John Wood who noted Rice's accomplishments in a Washington Post letter to the editor. Sources say he came across many instances where the names of Trump officials had been revealed.

DON LEMON, CNN: It has been on month since the President of the United States falsely tweeted that former President Barack Obama wiretapped him.

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RICE: Yes, that is possible.

Cotton, a member of the Senate Intelligence Committee, added that he's "never asked for an unmasked name".

RICE: That is exactly right, Andrea. "I was surprised to see reports from Chairman Nunes on that count today". In order to protect the privacy rights of those US persons, the government has imposed procedures for "minimizing" or "masking" those persons' identities. "Nor will we aid and abet the people trying to misinform you, the American people, by creating a diversion". Imagine if we saw something of grave significance that involved Russian Federation, or China, or anyone else, interfering in our political process and we needed to understand the significance of that.

As we pointed out on Sunday, ferreting out the truth about Russia's meddling in the November election places a heavy and solemn burden on those to whom the duty falls, such as Virginia Sen.

Many on Twitter were quick to note that two people with prominent access to the president were praising the words and actions of a man who had made many claims they found extremely objectionable.

Rice also batted away reports that she allegedly had a "spreadsheet" of telephone calls made by Trump campaign officials.

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