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Monday, December 09, 2019 {{ new Date().getDay() }}

Reprinted with permission from AlterNet.

 

A common complaint expressed by ex-members of the Trump Administration is that President Donald Trump simply didn’t listen to their guidance and input. And according to a report by Time Magazine, senior intelligence briefers are expressing a similar frustration—one of whom accused Trump of showing “willful ignorance” when information was presented.

Time’s John Walcott, in a February 2 article, reported that the “most troubling” thing, according to intelligence briefers Time spoke to, is how angry and defensive Trump becomes when presented with information that contradicts positions he has taken.

In a January 30 tweet, for example, Trump lashed out over Iran—posting, “The Intelligence people seem to be extremely passive and naive when it comes to the dangers of Iran. They are wrong! When I became President Iran was making trouble all over the Middle East, and beyond.”

Trump went on to say, “Be careful of Iran. Perhaps Intelligence should go back to school!”

According to Walcott, this tension between the president and intelligence briefers “has existed since the beginning of Trump’s presidency.”

Walcott reported, “The danger, one former intelligence official said, is that those leaders and other intelligence briefers may eventually stop taking such risks in laying out the facts for the president.”

Actor as Donald Trump in Russia Today video ad

Screenshot from RT's 'Trump is here to make RT Great Again'

Russia Today, the network known in this country as RT, has produced a new "deep fake" video that portrays Donald Trump in post-presidential mode as an anchor for the Kremlin outlet. Using snippets of Trump's own voice and an actor in an outlandish blond wig, the ad suggests broadly that the US president is indeed a wholly owned puppet of Vladimir Putin– as he has so often given us reason to suspect.

"They're very nice. I make a lot of money with them," says the actor in Trump's own voice. "They pay me millions and hundreds of millions."

But when American journalists described the video as "disturbing," RT retorted that their aim wasn't to mock Trump, but his critics and every American who objects to the Russian manipulations that helped bring him to power.

As an ad for RT the video is amusing, but the network's description of it is just another lie. Putin's propagandists are again trolling Trump and America, as they've done many times over the past few years –- and this should be taken as a warning of what they're doing as Election Day approaches.

The Lincoln Project aptly observed that the Russians "said the quiet part out loud" this time, (Which is a bad habit they share with Trump.)