Trump put our national security at risk

A television set is on in the West Wing of the White House in Washington Monday

After standing by Donald Trump during the rockiest launch of a presidency in modern times, key Senate Republicans began edging away from him on Tuesday amid new disclosures that he gave top secret intelligence to the Russians, and attempted to tamp down an FBI investigation into his campaign's ties to Russians.

But according to the Post's reporting, the information Trump revealed came to US officials under the condition that it would not be shared outside of government officials with the appropriate level of access.

"We appreciate the relationship we have with Israel and appreciate the exchange of information we have with them", Spicer said in a press briefing Tuesday. In a statement emailed to The New York Times, Ron Dermer, Israeli ambassador to the United States, reaffirmed that the two countries would maintain a close counterterrorism relationship.

The revelation deals a potential blow to intelligence relationships based on trust that secrets will be kept. But one can easily imagine allies and, indeed, our own intelligence community may be more cautious about passing such information along to the Oval Office.

"If that partner learned we'd given this to Russian Federation without their knowledge or asking first, that is a blow to that relationship", a USA official told the Washington Post.

Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell called the intelligence uproar a distraction from GOP priorities such as tax reform and replacing the health care law. The nature of specific threats was discussed, he said, but not sources, methods or military operations. Other officials have said that the spy agencies were contacted to help contain the damage from the leak to the Russians.

The bombshell revelation ignited speculations that Israel may cancel Trump's upcoming trip, according to the Jerusalem Post's senior Israeli political correspondent, Lahav Harkov.

He also cast some of Trump's revelations as information that was available from publicly available "open-source reporting".

Lischka, who sits on the German parliament's intelligence oversight committee, noted that Trump has access to "exclusive and highly sensitive information including in the area of combating terrorism". McMaster on Tuesday declined to confirm that detail, but said if it did occur, it was out of "an overabundance of caution".

Addressing the controversy earlier on Tuesday, National Security Adviser Gen. H.R. McMaster told reporters during a White House press briefing that Trump's discussion of the intelligence was "wholly appropriate" for the topic of conversation between the president and the Russian officials.

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US President Donald Trump (left in photo) on Tuesday wrote on Twitter that he was acting within the privilege afforded by his position when he shared intelligence with Russian officials at the White House last week.

Regarding allegations that Trump may have jeopardized intelligence-gathering methods, McMaster said that was not the case. McMaster is now saying the conversation was "wholly appropriate" in context.

United States media reports said Mr Trump had shared top secret material with Russia's Foreign Minister and ambassador on 10 May.

It's as if the president of the United States of America doesn't remember classic national security wisdom: "Loose lips sink ships".

Over several days, US intelligence officials spent hours on conference calls making specific requests to CNN to withhold certain details of the intelligence information.

Doing so "could be a risk for our sources", he told the news agency.

A senior German lawmaker also expressed grave concern in reaction to the report. He's openly questioned the competency of intelligence officials and challenged their high-confidence assessment that Russian Federation meddled in last year's presidential election to help him win.

McMaster said that the USA and Russian Federation share a common enemy in ISIS, which took responsibility for the October 31, 2015, bombing of Metrojet Flight 9268 from Egypt to Russian Federation that killed all 224 people on board, he said.

Some Democratic lawmakers and former intelligence officials warned that, depending on what exactly Trump told Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov and Ambassador Sergey Kislyak, the lives of those gathering the intel provided by Israel to the US may now be at risk.

Trump described steps the Islamic State was taking to pursue a plot involving the use of laptop computers on civilian aircraft, officials said.

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