On January 6, 2017, the U.S. Intelligence Community issued an “Intelligence Community Assessment” (ICA) that found Russia deliberately interfered in the 2016 presidential election to benefit Trump’s candidacy.  The news media and Trump critics have claimed this assessment ended the debate on this issue because it was the unanimous and objective conclusion of “all 17” U.S. Intelligence Agencies.

I wrote in a January 7 Fox News Opinion article that there are compelling reasons to believe this ICA was actually a politicized analysis that violated normal rules for crafting intelligence assessments to ensure this one reached the bottom line conclusion that the Obama administration was looking for.  I believe this even more strongly after former Director of National Intelligence James Clapper’s Senate testimony this week.

In his May 8 testimony to a Senate Judiciary subcommittee hearing, Clapper confirmed what I said in January: the ICA reflected the views of only three intelligence agencies — CIA, NSA and FBI – not all 17.  I explained in my January article how unusual this was since an ICA is supposed to reflect the collected judgment of all U.S. intelligence agencies or at least include all agencies with relevant expertise.  Clapper did not explain why the Defense Intelligence Agency, the Department of Homeland Security and the State Department’s intelligence bureau did not participate.

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