“He is lucky the security clearance is all he is getting away with,” Kris “Tanto” Paronto, a former Army Ranger and private security staffer who fought back during the 2012 Benghazi terror attack as part of the CIA team, told Fox News in an interview on Friday.
Separately, in response to former CIA Director John Brennan’s earlier tweet that his “principles are worth far more than clearances,” Paronto fired back:
— Kris Paronto (@KrisParonto) 16 августа 2018 г.
“My principles are greater than clearances too John, especially when you and the @CIA kool-aid drinkers punishes us for not going along with the Benghazi cover-up story in order to protect you, @HillaryClinton’s & @BarackObama’s failures. You put your politics before us.”
Paronto contributed the book "13 Hours," which was later turned into a feature film about the Benghazi attack. He subsequently said that he and his team unjustly lost their security clearances, reportedly for speaking out, although he claimed that hadn’t shared any classified information about the attack.
“Normally when you have a clearance suspended, you’re supposed to know why… I was never given that,” he said, blaming Brennan since “it was his determination.”
Paronto continued his attack against Brennan on Twitter Thursday night, firing a round of accusations against the former CIA director over his “lying to Congress” and “spying on Presidential candidates.”
— Kris Paronto (@KrisParonto) 17 августа 2018 г.
However, there were multiple voices against President Trump’s recent decision on Brennan, calling it “ill-considered” and “unprecendented.”
As many as 12 former intelligence officials came up with a joint letter stating that the head of state’s move has little do with determining who “should” and “should not” hold security clearances, as the decision essentially boils down to nothing more than the suppression of free speech. “As individuals who have cherished and helped preserve the right of Americans to free speech — even when that right has been used to criticize us — that signal is inappropriate and deeply regrettable,” they wrote.
Another top intelligence official, William McRaven, the former Special Operations Commander who oversaw the Navy SEAL raid in Pakistan that killed Osama bin Laden, went still further, suggesting in an op-ed for The Washington Post that Trump “revoke his security clearance, too.”
White House Press Secretary Sarah Huckabee Sanders announced Wednesday that US President Donald Trump, who according to his statement has “a unique constitutional responsibility to protect the nation's classified information” was revoking the security clearance of former CIA Director John Brennan.