By Zachary Stieber
The former employees at the CIA and other U.S. intelligence agencies should be punished for claiming stories about emails on a computer belonging to President Joe Biden’s son were part of a Russian scheme, lawyers for former President Donald Trump said.
Top officials at the CIA, the Office of the Director of National Intelligence (ODNI), the National Security Agency (NSA), and the Department of Defense (DoD) were urged in letters on May 18 reviewed by The Epoch Times to take action against the employees, with Trump lawyers asserting the employees “changed the outcome of the election through knowingly flagrant misconduct.”
Jim Clapper, a former director of national intelligence; Mike Hayden, a former director of the CIA, and Nick Rasmussen, former director of the National Counterterrorism Center, were among those who signed the letter about Hunter Biden’s laptop, which was dated Oct. 19, 2020.
The missive was sent to Politico, which portrayed it as dozens of former intelligence officials calling stories about the emails on the computer “Russian disinformation,” though the letter itself used slightly different language, saying the release of the emails “has all the classic earmarks of a Russian information operation.”
Because of the positions the letter signatories held, they had to seek prepublication review from the agencies they worked for, Timothy Parlatore, a lawyer representing Trump, told the agencies in the new letters.
“It is our belief, based in part on the speed and timeliness of publication and in part on the lack of the required disclaimer, that not one of these NSA employees complied with their legal obligations. Yet, despite this grave interference in our American democratic process, it still appears that no investigative or corrective action was taken against any of them,” he told Gen. Paul Nakasone, head of the NSA, in one of the letters.
Parlatore and his colleagues urged the agencies “to proceed immediately with legal action to enforce the interests of the United States of America in ensuring that such breaches of vital security provisions do not continue to go unchecked.”
The NSA declined to comment. The other agencies did not answer queries.
The letter to the CIA was first reported by Just the News.
No evidence has emerged supporting the supposition that Russians were behind the release of the Hunter Biden emails, but some of the former officials who signed the letter have defended their actions.
Russ Travers, a former National Counterterrorism Center acting director who signed the letter, told the New York Post that “we were concerned about Russian disinformation efforts” and “I considered the cautionary warning to be prudent.”
“I have not seen any information since then that would alter the decision behind signing the letter,” Emile Nakhleh, a former CIA official, added.
Parlatore pointed to polls that indicate a significant portion, around 17 in 100, of Biden voters would not have voted for him if they knew about the emails when they voted.
John Sipher, a former senior operations officer at the CIA and another signatory, drew attention in March for saying he felt “pretty good” about influencing the election.
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