New Intel Assessment Challenges Trump on NK, Iran

New Intel Assessment Challenges Trump on NK, Iran

US Director of National Intelligence Dan Coats said: "We continue to assess that Iran is not now undertaking the key nuclear weapons-development activities we judge necessary to produce a nuclear device".

- North Korea is unlikely to give up its nuclear arsenal.

National intelligence director Dan Coats and other intelligence chiefs presented the Worldwide Threat Assessment report to the Senate on Tuesday.

Under the 2015 deal, Iran agreed to restrict its nuclear activities in exchange for the lifting of sanctions.

The statement on North Korea drew extra attention coming ahead of a planned summit meeting next month between Trump and North Korean leader Kim Jong Un.

Meanwhile, Coats also noted that Russian Federation and China will look to meddle in the 2020 presidential election, Coats said, according to NBC News.

"A normal human being listening to the intel chiefs today on Iran and North Korea would conclude that Trump was dead wrong to withdraw from the JCPOA and dead right to negotiate with KJU even though zero nukes was magical thinking", said Aaron David Miller, director of the Middle East program at the Woodrow Wilson Center think tank in Washington.

This violation gave Trump pretext to pull out of the deal, and United States rhetoric on Iran since has repeated the same themes.

Mr. Trump, however, said Iran is a "source of potential danger and conflict" but are only contained because of the strain on its economy.

Russia, for example, will likely continue to go after critical infrastructure and focus on stealing intel from North Atlantic Treaty Organisation and Five Eyes (US, Canada, UK, Australia and New Zealand) allies in an attempt to get military and diplomatic dirt.

North Korea also unveiled a new song titled "Our National Flag" on New Year's Day and publicized the song through its propaganda outlets. "Now a whole different story", Trump added, noting that he was looking forward to the summit with Kim.

Dancing on Ice’s Gemma Collins helps ratings with fall
Gemma's horrific skating fall came in the closing moments of her live routine to Celine Dion ballad It's All Coming Back To Me . He told The Sun online: "Gemma will miss rehearsals today, and we'll see how she is tomorrow".

Ebola Virus Kills Two Soldiers In DR Congo
Local laboratory capacity to test samples taken from people suspected of having Ebola is also being strengthened. Rwanda also plans to vaccinate its frontline responders, according to World Health Organization statistics.

Netherlands turns down request to accept 47 rescued migrants
Three members of parliament sympathetic to the migrants' plight were refused permission by the ministry to board the Sea Watch 3 . With little space on board, numerous migrants are forced to stay on deck, sheltering under a tarpaulin but with little heat.

The pair met in Singapore last June to discuss denuclearisation of the Korean peninsula, but little progress has been made since then on the issue.

Coats said Moscow is preparing cyber attack capabilities that would "allow it to disrupt or damage USA civilian and military infrastructure during a crisis" and Iran and North Korea pose increasing threats to the US government and companies.

"North Korea's leaders see having a nuclear weapons capability as critical to regime survival".

Despite their testimony, Mr. Trump once again appeared to take credit for "tremendous progress made" in the fight against ISIS and was confident in their demise.

However, the extent and vehemence of the criticism and the intensely public way Trump expressed his anger, showed how deep the split is between the White House and some of the country's most respected security officials.

Former CIA Director John Brennan previous year called Trump's performance at a joint news conference with Russian President Vladimir Putin "nothing short of treasonous" after Trump seemed to give credence to Putin's denial of Russia meddling in the 2016 election.

Coats declined to respond when Democratic Senator Ron Wyden asked whether Trump's not releasing records of his discussions with Russian President Vladimir Putin put USA intelligence agencies at a disadvantage.

He added that Mr Trump's insistence on contradicting intelligence chiefs, particularly in relation to Russian meddling in U.S. elections, "harms our ability to defend ourselves". "They are wrong!" Trump, who criticized US intelligence agencies even before he took office, said in a Twitter post.

Media captionTrump says he "misspoke" at Putin summit, but is it too late?

The Senate intelligence committee is one of several congressional panels, along with special counsel Robert Mueller, that have been investigating whether there were any connections between Trump's 2016 and Russian efforts to influence the election.

President Trump has focussed his return fire on his intelligence chief for now.

Related Articles