US presidential candidate Donald Trump says he does not trust the intelligence produced by the American spy agencies, citing the situation in the Middle East.
In response to a question on whether he “trust[s] intelligence,” the Republican nominee replied “Not so much from the people that have been doing it for our country.”
He made the comments in an interview aired on “Fox and Friends” Wednesday morning, hours before he was set to receive his first classified intelligence briefing.
“I mean, look what’s happened over the last 10 years. … It’s been catastrophic,” he said. “Very easy to use them, but I won’t use them, because they’ve made such bad decisions.”
The real estate mogul was apparently referring to apparent intelligence failures preceding the 2001 war on Afghanistan and the 2003 invasion of Iraq.
His comments undermine the American spy network, consisting of 16 federal intelligence agencies and tens of thousands of employees.
The remarks also follow a US House Republican analysis released last week, apparently proving that intelligence produced by the military’s Central Command had been edited to provide a positive image of the fight against Daesh terrorists in Iraq and Syria.
The reality TV star was supposed to take part in the planned briefing along with Lieutenant General Michael Flynn, the former head of the US Defense Intelligence Agency in the administration President Barack Obama.
“He’s a terrific guy, a terrific general: tough, smart, feels like I do about illegal immigration, in particular,” Trump said of him.
New Jersey GOP Governor Chris Christie is also scheduled to join Trump.