Trump invites legal action from John Brennan over security clearance

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The war of words between former USA security officials and President Donald Trump showed no sign of abating Friday, as Trump promised he would move "very quickly" to revoke the clearance for a Justice Department official whose wife worked for the firm involved in producing a dossier on Trump's ties to Russian Federation.

On Thursday, 15 former top-level intelligence officials from Democratic and Republican administrations registered their dismay at what they said was an attempt by Trump to stifle free speech.

CIA, State Department and Navy alumni, as well as USA ambassadors and U.S. attorneys signed the letter on Monday.

Trump revoked Brennan's security clearance Wednesday, saying Brennan's history "calls into question his objectivity and credibility". They said former government officials have a right to express unclassified views on national security issues without fear of being punished for doing so.

Former National Security Adviser Anthony Lake and former Nasa administrator and Navy secretary Sean O'Keefe have signed the letter, along with more than 20 former United States attorneys and 10 former ambassadors.

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Signaling that his efforts to target clearances over his frustration with the Russian Federation investigation were not over, Trump tweeted it was a "disgrace" for Bruce Ohr to be in the Justice Department.

President Donald Trump speaks during a Cabinet Meeting on August 16, 2018.

'If my clearances and my reputation, as I'm being pulled through the mud now, if that's the price we're going to pay to prevent Donald Trump from doing this against other people, to me it's a small price to pay so I am going to do whatever I can personally to try to prevent these abuses in the future and if it means going to court, I will do that, ' he said on NBC's 'Meet the Press'. "I think John is subtle like a freight train, and he's going to say what's on his mind".

But on Wednesday, one day after the book's release, the White House announced that it revoked former Central Intelligence Agency director John Brennan's security clearance.

Mr Trump added that people were only supporting Mr Brennan because they wanted to keep their own clearances, which are worth "big dollars".

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Brennan is considering legal action against the administration after the president unilaterally revoked his security clearance on the grounds that he's a loose cannon who can not be trusted with national secrets.

"Mr. Brennan's lying and recent conduct, characterized by increasingly frenzied commentary, is wholly inconsistent with access to the nation's most closely held secrets and facilitates the very aim of our adversaries, which is to sow division and chaos", the White House said.

Another group of 60 former security officials followed up with a similar letter on Friday.

Trump drew attention to the fact that holding high-level security clearance is often a prerequisite for the top jobs in Washington, DC, and that retaining that clearance after retirement - when it is no longer needed for public purposes - is a well-known perk of life at the top of the food chain in the Beltway "swamp".

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