The last 24 hours are so full of stories that this one appears to have fallen through the cracks:
One of the Trump administration’s first decisions about the fight against the Islamic State was made by Michael Flynn weeks before he was fired – and it conformed to the wishes of Turkey, whose interests, unbeknownst to anyone in Washington, he’d been paid more than $500,000 to represent.
The decision came 10 days before Donald Trump had been sworn in as president, in a conversation with President Barack Obama’s national security adviser, Susan Rice, who had explained the Pentagon’s plan to retake the Islamic State’s de facto capital of Raqqa with Syrian Kurdish forces whom the Pentagon considered the U.S.’s most effective military partners. Obama’s national security team had decided to ask for Trump’s sign-off, since the plan would all but certainly be executed after Trump had become president.
Flynn didn’t hesitate. According to timelines distributed by members of Congress in the weeks since, Flynn told Rice to hold off, a move that would delay the military operation for months.
It looks like Chuck Schumer’s advice not to pick a fight with the intelligence community is right: every major news organization got a scoop yesterday. This one went to McClatchy. The Times’ allotment was that Trump’s team knew that Flynn was under investigation before he came to the White House. The Wall Street Journal learned that the Israeli source Trump burned was the most important source we have on ISIS. Reuters has an exclusive on the 18 contacts the Trump campaign had with Russia. And of course the Post got a recording of Kevin McCarthy saying that Trump and Dana Rohrbacher are on Putin’s payroll. I don’t know if that last one was from the “deep state” but the rest were sure leaked by someone from a national security agency. That’s just in one day, which leads me to believe that they have a lot more (otherwise they would drip, drip, drip it out).