Tag Archives: Fred Fleitz

‘Fake News’: Former CIA Analyst Slams WaPo Story Alleging Intel Community Concerns About Trump

Originally published by PJ Media:

The anti-Trump media is pushing a Washington Post story published yesterday that claims President Trump has a tenuous relationship with the U.S. intelligence community — but one former member of the intelligence community is calling it “fake news.”

The article claims that the president “continues to reject the judgments of U.S. spy agencies on major foreign policy fronts” and that this has become “a source of mounting concern to senior U.S. intelligence officials.”

“This story should scare everyone,” wrote NBC’s “Fusion Ken” Dilanian on Twitter.“This is an important story … on the widening gap between Trump and the U.S. intelligence community,” wrote Bill Rucker, the White House bureau chief for the Washington Post. Slate’s Will Saletan said it was an “excellent” report that “exposes a growing menace.”

“I’ll believe that Trump is growing into the presidency when his staff stops talking about him like a toddler,” wrote Daniel Drezner, a professor at the Fletcher School at Tuft University.

Drezner’s comment was based on the claims of an anonymous “U.S. official” who suggested that the intel community had to dumb down the presidential daily briefing for Trump:

From the start of Trump’s presidency, the CIA and the Office of the Director of National Intelligence began streamlining the PDB, reducing it to a collection of bullet points and images or graphics. U.S. officials have made additional adaptations over the past two years.

They generally refrain from sending analysts who are deep experts on a specific subject, instead dispatching generalists for meetings with a president whose attention tends to wander.

“Either it doesn’t resonate or there is a lack of comprehension,” the U.S. official said. “You feel frustration and helplessness in a way. What else can you do?”

Fred Fleitz, a former chief of staff for the Trump White House National Security Council, gave the Washington Post’s Greg Miller an on-the-record interview for the article. Fleitz decried on Twitter what he called a “very misleading fake news piece” and “bad journalism.”

“He ignored most of what I told him in an on-the-record interview and misrepresented the few quotes from me that he used,” Fleitz, a former CIA analyst, wrote.

Fleitz told PJ Media the presidential daily briefing has always used images and graphics. “I was a PDB receipient,” he said, adding that it was no different from when he worked for the intelligence community and wrote PDB items. “The only difference now is many PDB recipients get the PDB on iPads,” he said.

Fleitz said on Twitter that it was clear at the start of his telephone conversation with Miller “that the outcome of this piece was a foregone conclusion.” He added that Miller wasn’t interested in his assessment based on his work in the NSC, or that President Trump’s relationship with the United States intelligence community “is going well and has greatly improved.” Fleitz blamed former CIA director John Brennan for the political damage done to the intelligence community.

The Post characterized Fleitz as one of “Trump’s defenders” and quoted him as saying that the president’s “relationship with the intelligence community (IC) has improved over the past year, in part because of the departure of leaders who had held senior jobs under President Barack Obama.”

“The president had understandable reservations about the IC,” said Fred Fleitz, a former intelligence officer who served in the White House under national security adviser John Bolton for several months this year.

“The good news is that Mike Pompeo and John Bolton have been resolving this problem and restoring the president’s confidence in the IC,” Fleitz said.

Fleitz, a former chief of staff to Bolton, complained on Twitter that “Miller could not bring himself to admit that @AmbJohnBolton is one of the IC’s best customers.”

In a text to PJ Media, Fleitz laid out the damage he believes has been done by both current and former IC officials:

1) The repeated criticism of Trump to the press that he could not be trusted and was a traitor because of alleged ties to Russia.

2) Current and former CIA officers telling the press they would refuse to brief trump.

3) The series of leaks in late 2016-early 2017 — including the leak of the Flynn NSA transcript. At least some of tis came from IC officers.

4) John Brennan, both his incredibly inappropriate vicious criticism of Trump and what now appears to be his concerted efforts in 2016 to promote a false narrative that the Trump campaign was collaborating with Russia.

5) Politicization of intelligence to hurt Trump, especially the Jan. ’17 intel community assessment that found Russia meddled in the 2016 election and did so to help Trump win.

Fleitz spoke about many of these same issues in an interview on Fox News back in June of 2017:

Russia-Ukraine Tensions Escalate

With Bill Marshall, Fred Fleitz, Adam Kredo and Kevin Freeman

BILL MARSHALL, as been an intelligence analyst and investigator in the government, the private sector, and the non-profit sector for 30 years, Senior Investigator for Judicial Watch:

  • Consequences of the numerous Clinton corruption cases
  • Details on the House IT Scandal

FRED FLEITZ, Incoming CEO & President of Center for Security Policy:

  • Russia’s current aggression towards Ukraine
  • Why freedom of navigation is essential for world trade
  • Prospects for upcoming G20 Summit

ADAM KREDO, Senior Writer for the Washington Free Beacon:

  • Implications of Tehran’s nuclear arsenal ambitions
  • Iran in breach of Chemical Weapons Convention
  • Consequences of Putin propping up Assad’s regime

KEVIN FREEMAN, Author of Game Plan: How to Protect Yourself from the Coming Cyber-Economic Attack (2013), Author of Secret Weapon: How Economic Terrorism Brought Down the U.S. Stock Market and Why It Can Happen Again (2012), Founder of Globaleconomicwarfare.com, Senior Fellow at the Center for Security Policy:

  • Putin’s strategy in the natural gas market
  • Pipeline to open between China and Russia
  • How Central American caravan poses a threat to US security

Lessons of the Asia Bibi Case

With Nina Shea, Kevin Freeman, Robert Charles and Fred Fleitz

NINA SHEA, Director of the Center for Religious Freedom and Senior Fellow at the Hudson Institute:

  • The story of Asia Bibi – the first Pakistani woman to be sentenced to death for ‘insulting the Prophet Muhammad’
  • Extreme protests and violence due to Bibi’s acquittal
  • Pakistan’s blasphemy laws

KEVIN FREEMAN, Host of Economic War Room on CRTV, author of Game Plan and Secret Weapon:

  • What we can learn from the miracle at Dunkirk?
  • How Americans can protect themselves from vulnerability created by Chinese manufactured medication
  • U.S.-China confrontation at APEC summit
  • ZTE’s export of social control to Venezuela

ROBERT CHARLES, Former Assistant Secretary of State at the State Department’s Bureau of International Narcotics and Law Enforcement Affairs in the Bush administration:

  • Latest on the migrant caravans headed for the U.S. border
  • How acting Attorney General Whitaker should handle the Russia investigation
  • The implications of the Clinton campaign’s involvement with Christopher Steele
  • Macron’s call for a European army

FRED FLEITZ, Incoming President and CEO of the Center for Security Policy:

  • New report confirms previous reports that Iran was 2-3 months away from a nuclear weapon
  • Untrue article in WSJ
  • How President Trump is likely to proceed with the Saudis, Turks and Iranians after Khashoggi

Trump’s Maximum Pressure Campaign on Iran

With Fred Fleitz, Kevin Freeman, Joe diGenova and Mark Krikorian

FRED FLEITZ, CEO and President of Center for Security Policy:

  • Significance of Trump’s maximum pressure campaign against Iran
  • Prospects of North Korean denuclearization

KEVIN FREEMAN, Senior Fellow at Center for Security Policy, Author of “Game Plan: How to Protect Yourself from the Coming Cyber-Economic Attack,” Author of “Secret Weapon: How Economic Terrorism Brought Down the U.S. Stock Market and Why It Can Happen Again”:

  • Is applying more pressure on Iran the right approach?
  • Beijing’s digital Belt and Road Initiative
  • Implications of US dependencies on Chinese pharmaceuticals

JOE diGENOVA, Founding Partner of the Washington, D.C. Law Firm of diGenova & Toensing, LLP, Former U.S. Attorney, District of Columbia, Former Chief Counsel and Staff Director of the Senate Rules Committee, Former Chief Counsel to the Senate Judiciary, Governmental Affairs and Select Intelligence Committees:

  • The illegal targeting of Trump through the Mueller investigation
  • Significance of current Midterm elections

MARK KRIKORIAN, Executive Director of the Center for Immigration Studies, Contributor at National Review:

  • The role immigration has played in the Midterm elections
  • Does the incoming caravan pose as a security threat?
  • Is birthright citizenship a Constitutional right?

U.S. Set for Harsh Response to Foreign Election Meddling

Originally published on The Washington Free Beacon:

The U.S. government has prepared harsh responses to any nations or groups that seek to disrupt the midterm elections this week, according to a senior National Security Council official who recently left the White House.

Fred Fleitz, the chief of staff for the NSC until last week, also said the United States may not extend the New START arms treaty with Russia over concerns Moscow is not complying with the 2010 strategic arms accord.

On potential meddling by China and Russia in the midterm elections that end Tuesday night, Fleitz, a former CIA analyst, said the NSC held hours of meetings to discuss threats and responses.

“Our enemies have been trying to meddle in our elections for many years. It didn’t just happen in 2016,” Fleitz said in an interview with the Washington Free Beacon.

“I know that there are very, very sound and serious policies to stop any meddling in the 2018 election, and to hold any parties that do that accountable,” said Fleitz, who will soon take over as president of the conservative Center for Security Policy, a Washington think tank.

Fleitz, as chief of staff and executive director of the NSC, had access to some of the nations most intimate secrets and also helped coordinate key national security policy. He took part in internal White House meetings on the threat posed by foreign targeting of the midterm elections.

Press reports, he said, about the administration’s planning and policies were “extremely distorted” in failing to recognize the large amount of time senior officials devoted to “making sure this doesn’t happen again.”

“My hope is there won’t be any meddling,” he said. “But if there is, I think there are going to be dire consequences for the nations and parties that do that.”

Asked whether U.S. government agencies are preparing to conduct counter cyber attacks against foreign states that seek to disrupt voting or vote tallying, Fleitz declined to elaborate.

“I can simply say it is a very substantial policy,” he said. “Many, many hours were spent putting it together.”

Under new authorities authorized by the president, the U.S. intelligence community and Pentagon are prepared to conduct counter-hacking attacks on Russia or China if election interference is detected. Doing so would be one of the first uses of American offensive cyber attack capabilities.

The Fort Meade-based Cyber Command and the National Security Agency are the government’s two main cyber attack centers.

No details of plans for counter cyber attacks have been disclosed. They likely would involve conducting intrusions into bank accounts and information systems of foreign actors linked to election meddling operations. The goal could be to sabotage cyber attack infrastructures or funding sources.

An NSC spokeswoman did not comment on what plans are in place for countering foreign election meddling.

Trump administration security officials said in a briefing on election security last week that elections will be held in about 10,000 local districts nationwide.

“Every single one of those has a range of authorities and emergency plans that are in place already to be able to deal with a range of emergencies that happen,” a senior National Security Council official said.

President Trump in September signed an executive order on election security that directs the imposition of sanctions against states caught engaging in election interference.

The Department of Homeland Security is monitoring election infrastructure while the FBI and CIA are conducting intelligence gathering related to foreign election interference.

The interference can range from influence operations, such as advertising and lobbying to affect voting, as well as the use of social media to sow division and planting stories in English language media. Seeding disinformation about political candidates and disseminating foreign propaganda are other foreign influence tools.

Separately, technical interference through cyber and other electronic means is also a concern.

That interference could include actions taken against the electoral systems and processes. Potential activities could target the infrastructure used to register voters, generate ballots, record votes, tally votes, and to certify votes that are then delivered to authorities. It could also include seeking to interfere with approval or disapproval of ballot measure or referendum.

“That has to be met with swift and severe action, which is why the president has put that executive order in place to make sure that we bring to bear all capabilities of the federal government to react, number one, warn off our foreign adversaries; and number two, react swiftly and strongly in the case that we do see that level of interference,” the official said.

The administration has set up a special unit to monitor election processes from the White House. DHS, the FBI, and U.S. intelligence agencies will be monitoring the election Tuesday and for days after.

“The FBI is concerned about ongoing interference campaigns by Russia, China, and other foreign actors, including Iran, to undermine confidence in democratic institutions and influence public sentiment and government policies,” a senior intelligence official told reporters last week.

“These activities also may influence voter perceptions and decision-making in the 2018 and 2020 U.S. elections.”

“Foreign interference in U.S. elections is a threat to our democracy, and, as such, identifying and preventing this interference is a top priority for the FBI and federal government,” the official added.

Vice President Mike Pence last month outlined Chinese election interference as a covert and overt effort by Beijing to unseat the president.

Pence said China is engaged in an unprecedented bid to influence voters, such as those farm states hit by U.S. trade measures against China.

Beijing is targeting American public opinion, the 2018 election, and the environment leading up to the presidential election in 2020. China “wants a different American president,” Pence said.

Based on the high profile Russian meddling in the 2016 election, security officials are monitoring Russian intelligence and influence activities closely for signs of any new and different tactics in Moscow’s interference activities.

So far, no Russian technical operations have been detected targeting election infrastructure. Some efforts to use social media such as Facebook and Twitter have been spotted.

On arms control, Fleitz said the president will decide in the future whether or not to extend the 2010 New START arms treaty. The treaty expires in February 2021.

Fleitz suggested Russia has not complied with New START. The treaty limits the United States and Russia to 1,550 deployed warheads.

Russia is engaged in a significant strategic nuclear forces buildup that includes several new missiles, including some that may not be compliant under New START.

“There is going to have to be a serious evaluation of the New START treaty—whether it is in American interests [and] whether Russia is complying with that treaty and then we’ll see if it will be extended,” Fleitz said.

Fleitz praised Trump’s announcement that the United States would jettison the 1987 Intermediate-range Nuclear Forces Treaty based on Russian violations.

The INF Treaty was a good treaty for its day negotiated during the Cold War under President Ronald Reagan, he said.

“The problem is even the Obama administration had to acknowledge that the Russians were violating it but didn’t do anything about it,” Fleitz said.

“This is a priority for Ambassador Bolton that these treaties like this have to be fair and have to bind everyone, not just the United States.”

Russia violated the treaty by developing a ground-launched cruise missile with INF range and has deployed significant numbers of the SSC-8 missile.

“Now with Russia cheating, and with significant missile programs, not just by China but by Iran and North Korea, this treaty just didn’t make any sense,” he said. “If there is going to be an INF treaty it has to be a global INF treaty and for me this was just a no brainer.”

On other issues, Fleitz said Trump is taking on China’s unfair trade practices and theft of American intellectual property in ways no previous president has done.

“For years the United States has tolerated huge trade imbalances with the Chinese, the theft of intellectual property,” Fleitz said.

“The president has taken a different approach—he’s just not going to go along with it. We haven’t had a president prepared to confront the Chinese, maybe take on some short term economic pain to our country to make it clear that this behavior is unacceptable.”

Fleitz said he believes the pressure on Beijing is making a difference. “They see a president who is basically undeterred in his effort to press the Chinese for free and fair and balanced trade,” he said.

China’s leaders are “dragging their feet as much as they can” in giving in to Trump’s demands, Fleitz said, and that is leading the president to increasing the pressure.

“I think that’s the way it is going to keep going, that the pressure will continue until China’s behavior changes,” he said, noting that developing better trade ties is a significant priority for the president and his administration.

Fleitz said he is optimistic on negotiations with North Korea to denuclearize but that the process will be difficult.

“The North Koreans are balking and they’re threatening they’re going to pull out if they don’t get what they want. That’s just the way the North Koreans negotiate,” he said.

Fleitz also voiced concerns about the so-called snap-back sanctions that went into effect on Monday.

“Iran is one reason the president chose John Bolton to be national security adviser because he had the Bolton plan to get out of the Iran deal,” he said.

Bolton believes the Iran deal negotiated under President Barack Obama was a “fraudulent deal that couldn’t be fixed.”

The new strategy is to pursue a new deal by re-implementing sanctions that were lifted under Obama.

“This is good,” Fleitz said. “What concerns me and what concerns some conservative experts is that there are exceptions to these sanctions. Some countries will be allowed to buy oil from Iran, supposedly temporarily. I’m a little worried about that.”

Fleitz said if the president wants to maintain pressure on Iran “that means no exemptions.”

Those officials in the administration who are part of what Fleitz termed the Washington “swamp” have argued that granting the exemptions to the sanctions will be temporary.

“Giving exemptions to these sanctions I don’t think is consistent with the president’s policy and it is my hope that these exemptions will be canceled very quickly,” Fleitz said.

Fleitz said it was a privilege working for Trump, Bolton, and the NSC.

“I’m always astounded at how Ambassador Bolton absorbs huge amounts of intelligence every morning and feeds it back to the president throughout the day and in various meetings,” he said.

Beijing’s Cyber Warfare Capabilities

With Bill Marshall, Fred Fleitz, Bill Gertz and Jim Simpson

BILL MARSHALL, Senior Investigator for Judicial Watch:

  • The politicization of the FBI
  • Details on the misdoings of Andrew McCabe and Peter Strzok

FRED FLEITZ, CEO & President of CSP:

  • Trump’s policies toward Latin America
  • Bolton’s recent speech highlighting tyranny in Southern hemisphere
  • Russia’s violations of the INF Treaty

BILL GERTZ, Senior editor at the Washington Free Beacon, Inside the Ring columnist at the Washington Times, Author of iWar: War and Peace in the Information Age (2016):

  • How China engages in intellectual property theft
  • Significance of Beijing’s control of 5G technology

JIM SIMPSON, Freelance Investigative Journalist, Author of The Red-Green Axis: Refugees, Immigration, and the Agenda to Erase America):

  • The growing political violence in America
  • Dangers and influence of the red-green axis

Center for Security Policy Welcomes Home Fred Fleitz from the White House; Frank Gaffney Passes the Torch to Fleitz for the Center’s Second Thirty Years

15 October 2018 | News Release

Contact: Deborah Hamilton, Hamilton Strategies, Media@HamiltonStrategies.com, 610.584.1096, ext. 102


WASHINGTON – White House National Security Council Chief of Staff and Executive Secretary Fred Fleitz has accepted the Center for Security Policy’s invitation to return next month and succeed Frank J. Gaffney as President and CEO in January 2019. Gaffney, who founded the organization in 1988, will assume the new role of the Center’s Executive Chairman.

Prior to serving President Donald Trump as National Security Advisor John Bolton’s Chief of Staff, Fleitz served for four years as the Center’s Senior Vice President for Policy and Programs.

Fleitz will rejoin the Center on November 1 to begin the leadership transition.  He will resume his prominent role in the print, broadcast and social media as a spokesman for the organization and as an advocate for the sorts of robust defense and foreign policies that CSP has long championed and that have featured prominently in President Trump’s National Security Strategy.

“Throughout his career, Fred Fleitz has been one of the Center’s most admired allies and, in recent years, one of its most accomplished staff members.  I’m thrilled that he agreed to my request to wrap up as swiftly as possible his latest stint of public service in the Trump White House, and succeed me as President of the Center for Security Policy,” Gaffney said in announcing this development.

“Fred Fleitz is exceptionally qualified for this role,” Gaffney said. “His latest senior White House post was built on nearly two decades as an influential analyst at the Central Intelligence Agency, service as Chief of Staff to then-Under Secretary of State John Bolton, and several years as a professional staff member of the House Permanent Select Committee on Intelligence,” Gaffney added.  “Fred’s extraordinary skills and experience will be incalculably helpful as he leads the Center into its second thirty years.”

“All of us at the Center and our nation have benefited greatly from Fred’s seasoned judgment, his powerful communication capabilities, his dependability as a resource, and his self-effacing temperament. We look forward – as I am sure will President Trump and Ambassador Bolton – to Fred’s renewed contributions outside of governmentin support of their efforts to make America safe again,” Gaffney said.

Following the transition, Frank Gaffney will remain an active part of the Center’s leadership in his role as Executive Chairman. He will also continue hosting the Center’s nationally syndicated “Secure Freedom Radio” program and “Secure Freedom Minute” commentaries heard every weekday respectively by 1.1 million and 2.2 million people.

In addition, Gaffney will be working to help build a national movement behind the Save the Persecuted Christians Coalition, of which the Center for Security Policy is a founding member.

For over three decades, the Center for Security Policy has been nationally and internationally recognized as a valuable resource for policymakers, the media and the public. The Center has addressed emerging national security challenges by promoting the practice of “peace through strength” – the national security philosophy embraced by Presidents Ronald Reagan and Donald Trump.

With the help of outstanding staff members like Fred Fleitz and coalitions of other accomplished security policy practitioners, the Center has – despite its small size – helped inform and engender backing for many of President Trump’s most important national security initiatives. They include:

  • the U.S. government’s 2017 National Security Strategy;
  • its 2018 Counterterrorism Strategy;
  • the assertion of American sovereignty worldwide and withdrawal from the dangerous nuclear deal with Iran;
  • the intensification of efforts to stop importing more jihadists, denuclearize North Korea, and counter Communist China;
  • the protection of our most vital critical infrastructures, the nation’s electric grid; and
  • the commitment to deploy effective, global missile defenses, modernize at last our nuclear deterrent, enhance the readiness of and rebuild our conventional forces, and create a U.S. Space Force.

Congressional investigators have praised the Center’s work on how the Obama administration and its allies weaponized the FBI, the Justice Department, and the U.S. intelligence community to undermine Donald Trump’s candidacy and presidency by promoting a false narrative that the Trump campaign colluded with Russia. The Center has a consistent, unblemished track record of hawkishness toward the Kremlin that few others – especially the President’s critics– can match.

Learn more about the Center for Security Policy and follow its work at www.SecureFreedom.organd on Twitter @SecureFreedom.