Cotton does the Times in 10 tweets [with comment by Paul]

Yesterday’s big New York Times romp was the inflammatory hit piece “Despite concerns about blackmail, Flynn heard CIA secrets.” The story carried the byline of Matt Apuzzo, Matthew Rosenberg and Adam Goldman.

The thesis of the story was obviously spoonfed to the Times by Senator Ron Wyden (as is pointed out below). The story is based in part on public testimony, but in relevant part I believe it fails to cite a single on the record source. As usual, it seems to draw on classified information. Its apparent purpose is to kneecap CIA Director Mike Pompeo while finding yet another pretext to emit the fog of “collusion.”

Senator Tom Cotton addressed the Times story in a series of 10 tweets. He undermined the story in the first seven and returned with three more for good measure.

Senator Cotton persuades me that there is less to the Times story than meets the eye. And Senator Cotton’s last point — that certain Times reporters “need time to explain to FBI investigators their revealing of highly classified info” — well, that’s where Senator Cotton came in.

Which raises a related point. A sickening hypocrisy lies at the heart of this particular New York Times story. The hypocrisy can be seen with a look back to the point that Senator Cotton, then serving in Iraq, made in his famous 2006 email to the Times.

With their story yesterday, Apuzzo, Rosenberg and Goldman seek to create a scandal out of then National Security Adviser Michael Flynn’s attendance at the president’s daily intelligence briefings. Flynn was supposedly “compromised” at the time and therefore a security risk. This is the entire premise of their story. Yet the Times continues routinely to act as a conduit of “highly classified info” (to borrow Senator Cotton’s phrase below) from our intelligence agencies to our enemies. Something is wrong with this picture.

PAUL ADDS: This is great. It’s the best use of Twitter to make an actual argument that I’ve ever seen — almost enough to tempt me into getting an account.

I made a similar argument (less elegantly) about Flynn’s situation when I wrote:

Once Yates told the Trump administration [that Flynn was “compromised”], and assuming that someone in the Trump administration let Flynn know it had been so informed, the possibility of blackmail dissipated, it seems to me. The Russians could hardly get anywhere with Flynn by threatening to reveal what he figured the Trump administration already knew.

Even before Yates spoke up, Flynn may well have figured that the Trump administration knew of his conversations with the Russians. As a highly experienced intelligence guy, he probably knew that the U.S. had recorded the conversations.

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