And so Donald Trump flips on yet another issue.
One day after the President reversed his core stance on a broad range of policies including the US Dollar, interest rates, the futures of Janet Yellen, the Ex-Im bank, the obsolescence of NATO and whether China is a currency manipulator, on Thursday afternoon he took aim at Wikileaks and Julian Assance, when CIA Director, Mike Pompeo, in his first public appearance since taking the top intel post in the Trump administration, called the whistleblower organization a "non-state hostile intelligence service" abetted by state actors like Russia.
"It's time to call out WikiLeaks for what it really is: A non-state hostile intelligence service often abetted by state actors like Russia" Pompeo said.
"WikiLeaks walks like a hostile intelligence service and talks like a hostile intelligence service," Pompeo told an audience at a Washington think tank, adding that Russia's GRU intelligence service had used the anti-secrecy group to distribute hacked material during the 2016 U.S. presidential election.
CIA Director Mike Pompeo says WikiLeaks has been "abetted by state actors like Russia" https://t.co/N4oFu3tHOo— CNN Politics (@CNNPolitics) April 13, 2017
Pompeo took aim at WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange and former NSA contractor Edward Snowden during his first major public appearance since leaving Congress to serve in the top intelligence post in Donald Trump’s administration.
He also said that disclosures by Assange and Snowden have done "great harm to our nation’s national security and they will continue to do so in the long term."
And to think that just 6 months ago, Trump, i.e., Mike Pompeo's boss, said he loved Wikileaks...
On Thursday, Pompeo cited the intelligence community’s January report concluding that the GRU, Russia’s foreign military intelligence unit, went through WikiLeaks to released hacked emails from the DNC to influence the presidential election. The report concluded that Russia’s state-controlled media outlet RT actively collaborated with WikiLeaks in the influence campaign against the election.
Pompeo called Assange "a fraud, a coward hiding behind a screen," skewering him for exposing information about democratic governments rather than authoritarian regimes.
Which is ironic for Pompeo to say when just last July, Pompeo was quite keen on using the information disclosed by this "fraud and coward" for his own political purposes, when he was sharing Wikileaks documents on his Congressional Twitter account less than a year ago
Mike Pompeo was sharing Wikileaks documents on his Congressional Twitter account less than a year ago pic.twitter.com/cl5P6vnXSE— Jessica Schulberg (@jessicaschulb) April 13, 2017
Pompeo also accused Snowden of committing "treason" by leaking top-secret National Security Agency files, adding that his disclosures have made it more difficult for U.S. intelligence agencies to track terrorists and given them tools to hide in "digital forests."
“He was no whistleblower," Pompeo said.
Trump's latest reversal means that any hope Julian Assange may have had of being pardoned despite - at least according to Hillary Clinton and now the CIA - winning the election for Trump, is now officially gone, and should Assange ever be evicted from the Ecuadorian embassy in London, his fate will be anything but pleasant.