Former CIA analyst Ned Price suggested that US National Intelligence Acting Director Joseph Maguire has been withholding a whistleblower complaint, because it unfolds details of the phone conversation between the US President Donald Trump and his Russian counterpart Vladimir Putin, Washington Examiner reported.
In an interview with MSNBC, Price, who reportedly resigned from the CIA in order not to serve under the sitting President, said that President Trump allegedly had a controversy with President Putin right before the complaint was submitted to the Inspector General of the Intelligence Community.
“It’s always dangerous to speculate on the origins of potential wrongdoing during this administration because there is so much of it to go around but let me offer one theory that I think comports with the second line of thought that Ben put forward,” Price said. “I’ve always been curious about a July 31 phone call between President Trump and Vladimir Putin. This is a phone call that President Trump himself initiated.”
Price went on to explain that “the White House, after the Kremlin did, put out a read out that said they discussed potential American assistance to ongoing Siberian wildfires. That raised my curiosity even more.”
“President Trump was barely lifting a finger to fight ongoing wildfires in California. The Kremlin readout, however, added something quite different. It said, quote, ‘that the Russian president viewed Trump’s offer as a sign that fully fledged bilateral relations could be restored in the future.'”
“The Russians seemed to have an indication that President Trump had pledged or promised a restoration of diplomatic relations, of bilateral relations in a way that the White House certainly didn’t allude to in its readout,” said Price.
Adam Schiff, Chairman of the House Intelligence Committee, issued a subpoena against the Acting DNI and vowed to “enforce it’ so that Maguire explains the reasoning behind withholding the complaint. Maguire thought argued the disclosure did not meet the legal requirements for being transmitted to the Committee. Yet Maguire agreed to testify before the Committee at an open hearing next week.
No Director of National Intelligence has ever refused to turn over a whistleblower complaint the IG determined to be urgent and credible.
There is no privilege to engage in misconduct; not under this president, or any other.
That’s why I issued a subpoena and will enforce it. pic.twitter.com/pWg4MsOlwD
— Adam Schiff (@RepAdamSchiff) September 15, 2019
Michal Atkinson, Intelligence Community Inspector General who stated the complaint was “credible and urgent,” is also set to appear before the Committee panel and testify about the complaint behind closed doors.
Natalia Veselnitskaya – official website