- The Russians hacked the US government. Iran has taken revenge on America for the assassination of one of its military leaders. Yet Trump is handling the transition from the Pentagon to incoming President Joe Biden incorrectly, sources told Insider.
- “We need the incoming Biden government to be fully informed and ready to deal with these very dangerous issues facing NATO’s security,” the official said.
- Security sources are also not impressed by some officials leaving Trump behind.
- “The refusal to coordinate the handover of the most powerful military power in the world in a unified, responsible manner would be almost unthinkable,” a NATO source told Insider. “Except, of course, 2020, and we’re talking about the incredibly selfish, irresponsible hole called Donald Trump.”
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The outgoing Trump administration’s refusal to coordinate the handover of the Pentagon with the incoming Biden team, as well as the last minute of civilian positions with fringe figures for national security, could not have come at a worse time.
According to the two NATO officials and a former Obama defense official contacted by Insider, the US and its allies are dealing with the aftermath of Russian intrusion into the US government’s computer systems, as well as increased tensions with Iran.
“So there was a historic breach of the key networks of the US government, US troops and NATO allies fighting together in Iraq, Afghanistan, Syria and East Africa, and it comes on the year commemorating the assassination. [Iranian commander Qassem] Solimani that Tehran had promised revenge, “said a senior NATO official, who asked not to be identified and criticized a key ally. bombers flew to the Middle East as a model of force to repel Iranian action.
‘The refusal to coordinate the handover of the most powerful military power in the world in a united, responsible way would be almost unthinkable in the annals of history, except of course that it is in 2020 and we are talking about the incredibly selfish, irresponsible hole called Donald Trump, ”the official said.
“We need the incoming Biden administration to be fully informed and ready to deal with these very dangerous issues.”
“From an ally point of view, we understand that this is a difficult situation for our US allies, but there is a significant security situation going on with Iran that could explode at any time, as well as clear evidence that many of the safest US computer networks was hacked by Russians. intelligence, “the official said.
“We need the incoming Biden government to be fully informed and ready to address these very dangerous issues facing NATO’s security,” the official said.
See also: The US has mediated an unprecedented summit between Israel and Saudi Arabia as a reward for the assassination of an al Qaeda leader.
According to Sue Gough, a spokeswoman for the U.S. Department of Defense, the Pentagon has held several meetings with Biden’s team. Although one of the briefings – on Russia’s breakthrough with the highest levels of the Trump administration – only took place on December 30, was the day Insider asked for comment.
“The Biden-Harris DOD Agency Review Team met with the combat commanders for the US Cyber Command; the US European Command, which included NATO as an agenda item, and the US Central Command, which included discussions on Iran, as well as with the Deputy Assistant Secretaries of Defense for Europe and NATO, and for Russia, Ukraine and Eastern Europe, ‘she said. “Today, DOD briefed the ART on cybersecurity. In addition, DOD provided the ART with several responses to requests for information and a number of pieces of information, including in the initial transition books, which discussed current US relations with NATO and NATO member countries. “
The danger of chaos
In addition to refusing to hold transition meetings for an organization with more than an annual budget of $ 720 billion and millions of employees, Trump also fired Secretary of Defense Mark Esper in November. And Trump has begun appointing loyalists to a number of key positions, including civilian oversight of special operations, as well as a number of technical advisory boards. Some analysts fear that it is an intention to enlarge the department with loyalists to interfere with the Biden government.
But a former Obama-era defense official – who agreed to speak in the background to discuss internal personnel issues at the U.S. Department of Defense – said the concern should be more focused on the danger of chaos rather than a coordinated fifth column that Trump left behind continues with his policies.
“First, it looks like Trump does not have a defense policy at all, so there is no big plan here,” the former official said. “If one of these figures is loyal to Trump, it’s part of a cult attraction, not some ideological one, because there is no ideology.”
That does not mean that the appointment at the last minute, including Anthony Tata, a former general who was named the most important policy post in November, poses no risk, the former official said.
‘These fringe figures like Tata – who could never get so close to the top posts, because in [Tata’s] “if he’s completely insane – you should take the chance again with a title that can help them get consulting work later,” said the Obama-era official.
Separately, the source said, is a typical warning sign if ‘you see them suddenly trying to follow or close policies – troop withdrawals, air force priority shifts to the navy – these are their personal ideological goals, or it’s basic corruption where they insist on the nipple policies that will benefit future clients of defense contractors. ‘
Trump’s Defense Secretary believes Obama was a ‘terrorist leader’
The “insane” remark is a reference to Tata’s past. Before being under defense minister for policy, Tata kept a lively Twitter message, was a guest on Fox News and regularly made comments that were not in fact or in fact moored. He once falsely accused former President Obama of being a Muslim, and wrongly argued that Obama was a “terrorist leader.” He also said without evidence that Obama was a “Manchurian candidate” in the White House.
A military investigation in 2007 found that a forged legal document had been entered into in his child support case, which benefited his side. Tata told News & Observer: “We cleaned it up immediately.” He also slept with two women while married to his wife, a violation under military law, the News & Observer reports.
Before Tata was first nominated for the Pentagon policy post, Tata was such a minor figure in military affairs that Senator Jim Inhofe said fellow senators ‘did not yet know enough about Anthony Tata to take him on at this time’ to consider a very important position ‘. according to Defense News.
Insiders called on the Pentagon and Tata to respond, and the DOD pointed to a statement by Jonathan Rath Hoffman, Assistant Secretary of Defense for Public Affairs, made during a press release on July 30, 2020: “General Tata has experience and success leading large public organizations, public sector organizations and extensive national security experience. He was an effective acting Minister of Defense for policy. ‘
The White House, which had previously praised Tata, postponed comments to the DOD.
Dealing with it will suck resources and attention from more important matters at the Pentagon
Given the penny-ante nature of Tata’s shortcomings, the damage from a fundamental policy point of view would be mostly minimal, the former official said. But dealing with it will suck resources and attention from more important matters and at the Pentagon, which could end up being really risky, the source said.
“It’s probably going to be another half mess that someone has to clean up again for Donald Trump and his cheerful group of idiots,” the former official said. “The real risk is everything they do not look at to help the Biden team prepare as they run around pursuing personal goals against taxpayers.”