During an appearance on The Kelly File Monday night, General Michael Flynn, the former head of the Defense Intelligence Agency from 2011-2014, had some very harsh words for President Barack Obama. Flynn accused the president of taking on some “really lousy policies” regarding ISIS even though he had access to very accurate intelligence, and suggested that Obama lied about what he knew. He also said that the intel-skewing scandal investigation needs “to start right at the top.”
General Flynn began by defending the intelligence-gathering capabilities of the intelligence agencies.
“I would tell you that the accuracy and the warnings that have been provided on the rise of radical Islam over the last few years have been very very clear, so what the president has actually received from the national intelligence system is pretty good intelligence. I would say it’s very accurate. So what he’s done with that intelligence — from what we can tell — he’s taken on this really lousy policy…”
Asked by Kelly if it’s possible that Obama was — as the White House claims – surprised by the rise of ISIS, Flynn suggested as tactfully as he could — that the White House was lying.
He said that “there was so much activity and so much accurate reporting coming from all parts of our intelligence system into the White House. So to say that ‘I’m surprised at the rise of this threat’ — is a gross understatement of what reality is.”
Flynn said that the White House policy of not talking about radical Islam or the radicalization of the Islamic religion was causing intel analysts to push back.
“It is a cancer inside the Islamic religion — and the White House and the president frankly have not wanted to say that. So if you continue to get this push-back — which is really what happened…I think this is what you were seeing from the great analysts down in CENTCOM who have been at this for a long, long time,” Flynn explained.
“The focus of this investigation ought to start right at the top,” Flynn continued. “Where intelligence starts and stops is at the White House. The president sets the priorities and he’s the number one customer. So if he’s not getting the intelligence that he needs and he’s not paying attention to what else is going on, then something else is going wrong between him and the advisers that he has.”
Flynn stressed that as someone who has following terrorist activity in the region for many years, “it has not gotten better.”
“It has in fact doubled or in some cases around the region tripled in terms of the size and scope of the problem.”
Obama’s former defense intel chief found it difficult to believe that with the amount of intelligence the White house gets every day, the president “didn’t know this was a problem.”
“I mean — give me a break!” Flynn exclaimed.