Intel world struggles to crack the code of an untrusting Trump

Some fear that Trump’s highly public rebukes of the U.S. intelligence apparatus will undermine morale in the spy agencies, politicize their work, and damage their standing in a world filled with adversaries. After all, if the U.S. president doesn’t believe his own intelligence officials, why should anyone else?

“There is nothing more sacred to intelligence officers than their professionalism, honesty and non-partisanship. Trump’s charges strike at the core of their integrity,” said John Sipher, a former CIA officer with broad expertise on Russia…

Amy Jeffress, a former Department of Justice official, told POLITICO that she’s been in touch with intelligence community officials to discuss the challenge ahead.

“They don’t like the president-elect’s criticism and are even more concerned that he is skipping his intelligence briefings,” Jeffress said. “The new administration will need to reassure the career professionals, who of course include Democrats and Republicans, that they will not misuse or politicize their work.”

The question of the intelligence briefings is one that some analysts are more worried about than others.

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