Trump’s Attempt to Co-Opt the National Security Agency has Backfired

The NSA possesses SIGINT that shows coordination between Trump and Russia, and the agency has taken further steps to significantly increase intelligence analysis.

NSA Director Admiral Mike Rogers: SIGINT exists that answers the Trump-Russia collusion question.

Admiral Mike Rogers, Director of the United States National Security Agency recently held a “town hall” meeting with agency employees. The teleconference was broadcast to Agency facilities worldwide—apparently, a rarity.

The Observer reports that Admiral Rogers detailed to employees how Donald Trump attempted to coerce him into denouncing the FBI and Director Comey, according to multiple sources within the agency, all speaking on the condition of anonymity.

Sources report that Rogers explicitly stated that signals intelligence (SIGINT) that could support claims of collusion between Trump and company, and the Kremlin. Two additional NSA employees—employed in different capacities, and contacted independently of one another—have verified this to Global Security Review, validating the version of events as described below.

“I know you won’t like it, but I have to tell what I have seen.”
– NSA Director Admiral Mike Rogers to President Trump

Rogers explained how President Trump sought out both Admiral Rogers’ and Director of National Intelligence Dan Coates to publicly discredit former FBI Director James Comey, and the FBI, itself. Rogers adamantly refused to comply with the President’s request. Reportedly, Rogers then said to the President (again, independently validated to us by two separate agency employees): “I know you won’t like it, but I have to tell what I have seen.”

The same sources confirmed the report that Rogers (speaking to agency employees) explained that SIGINT does exist that is damaging to the Trump team. They verified that Rogers said “there is no question” the agency possesses SIGINT that evidences coordination between the Trump campaign and the Kremlin with regards to the 2016 presidential election.

NSA Ramps Up Its Support in the Investigations

The NSA has not only passed this intelligence along to the FBI counterintelligence and criminal investigation teams but has taken near-unprecedented measures to ramp-up investigative efforts.

Multiple sources have shared (initially with the Observer) that a preservation order had been issued to the NSA’s Directorate of Operations, the largest unit within the agency; responsible for managing and coordinating the agency’s SIGINT collection and operations assets around the globe.

A preservation order is a rarity within the NSA—agency insiders say the severity of the investigations is underlined by that fact. The preservation order—sent from the NSA’s General Counsel’s office—directs directorate personnel (at all levels) with identifying and preserving any SIGINT records that relate—even indirectly—to the allegations of improper ties between the Trump campaign or administration and Kremlin officials.

The order, according to multiple sources within the Directorate of Operations, specifically charged NSA analysts, managers, and other officials with seeking out (and preserving for investigators) any references to anyone who may have had the slightest involvement—especially to U.S. officials—with the Trump-Russia scandal.

Sources report that records would include intercepted emails, telephone call records, phone call transcripts, instant messages, social media posts or private messages, faxes, and anything else that might have been intercepted by the NSA. Sources have requested that individuals named in the General Counsel’s preservation order not be publicized as this

Sources have requested that individuals named in the General Counsel’s preservation order not be publicized as it pertains to ongoing criminal and counterintelligence investigations.

What does this mean for U.S. National Security?

The investigation seems to be ramping up. A prolonged investigation isn’t in U.S. national security interests, particularly considering Admiral Rogers recent comments. Top secret information could have been transferred to the Kremlin, or there may be further schemes afoot. Speculation aside, the U.S. information security is at risk as long as this investigation is underway.

Get the Global Security Brief
National Security & International Affairs Analysis in Your Inbox
You may opt-out at any time.
You might also like