Did Obama leave a minefield for the Trump administration/junta, one sown with Trump's own mines?
The New York Times reports that Obama officials in the final days before the new president took over took all the intelligence they had on Trump and Russia and distributed it to several federal agencies.
American allies, including the British and the Dutch, had provided information describing meetings in European cities between Russian officials — and others close to Russia’s president, Vladimir V. Putin — and associates of President-elect Trump, according to three former American officials who requested anonymity in discussing classified intelligence. Separately, American intelligence agencies had intercepted communications of Russian officials, some of them within the Kremlin, discussing contacts with Mr. Trump’s associates.
Then and now, Mr. Trump has denied that his campaign had any contact with Russian officials, and at one point he openly suggested that American spy agencies had cooked up intelligence suggesting that the Russian government had tried to meddle in the presidential election. Mr. Trump has accused the Obama administration of hyping the Russia story line as a way to discredit his new administration.
Seeding the Minefield
At intelligence agencies, there was a push to process as much raw intelligence as possible into analyses, and to keep the reports at a relatively low level of classification to ensure as wide a readership as possible across the government — and, in some cases, among European allies. This allowed the upload of as much intelligence as possible to Intellipedia, a secret wiki used by American intelligence analysts to share information.
No Wonder Trump Has Lost His Mind over Leaks
Trump and, by now, his inner circle know what's in those intelligence reports and analyses and they must know this stuff has been so widely circulated to prevent them from burying it. When they tried to get the FBI and the CIA to announce there was nothing to these reports it was an act of desperation by Trump and his minions. It sent Trump flying off the handle, issuing angry rebukes to his own intelligence community but, even if they wanted to help him, their hands are tied by how broadly the intelligence has been circulated and the fear that, if they did try to suppress it, the information would be leaked.