CNN Did Not Report Information Trump Leaked to the Russians for Fear of Losing Lives

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Jake Tapper on CNN's "The Lead," May 17, 2017
Jake Tapper on CNN's "The Lead," May 17, 2017Credit: Screen grab

CNN's Jake Tapper offered a scathing indictment of the gravity of U.S. President Donald Trump's leak of classified intelligence to the Russians on his show "The Lead" late Tuesday night. Tapper explained how CNN had learned of the specific intelligence, was asked not to publish it by the Trump administration, as it would put people's lives at risk, and as a result CNN decided not to publish it.

“By reporting the city’s name Trump administration officials insisted that would tip off American adversaries about sources and methods used to gather the intelligence. It would, they insisted, get people killed. CNN did not report the details. CNN did not report the name of the city.”

Tapper continues, by explain the details surrounding how CNN learned Trump did give the name of the city in question to the Russians. “It’s the same city. It’s the same city that CNN was cautioned not to report,” said Tapper.

Tapper then went on to show clips of Trump national security adviser H.R. McMaster claiming what Trump did was "wholly appropriate" earlier on Tuesday during a press briefing. "But somehow, we are simultaneously supposed to believe that President Trump sharing this information and more with a U.S. adversary, Russia, is ‘wholly appropriate,’ as McMaster said repeatedly today,” said Tapper.

“He shared information that then, as now, could lead to U.S. adversaries, say I don’t know, Russia using counterintelligence to try to figure out how the U.S. knows what it knows. And just so you know, as of today before this broadcast, we are still being told by the Trump administration to not report the name of the city, and we won’t.”

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