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John Brennan slams Trump’s rhetoric as ‘un-American’ after pipe bombs



john brennan
CIA Director John Brennan has criticized President Donald Trump
in the past, and had a pipe bomb addressed to him sent to CNN’s
New York office on Wednesday.

Associated Press/Pablo Martinez

  • Former CIA Director John Brennan on Wednesday evening made
    his first remarks following a wave of pipe bomb scares that day,
    which included one addressed to him.
  • Brennan condemned President Donald Trump’s often inflammatory
    rhetoric toward his Democratic opponents and the media, calling
    his behavior “un-American.”
  • Though Trump condemned political violence on Wednesday and
    vowed to catch the perpetrator, on Thursday, he appeared to blame
    the media for heightened political tensions across the country.

Former CIA Director John Brennan spoke out Wednesday evening,
hours after a pipe bomb addressed to him
arrived at CNN’s New York City office
amid a wave of similar incidents at the homes
and offices of top Democrats across the country.

Brennan told an audience in Austin, Texas,
that President Donald Trump’s constant invectives against the
media and his political opponents may have “emboldened
individuals to take matters into their own hands.”

He added that Trump was right to speak out on Wednesday and
condemn political violence,
but he noted that Trump also recently praised a lawmaker who
assaulted a reporter.

“What he said today is what the president should be doing, but
[he should] follow up on those words with actions and with his
future comments,” Brennan said. “A lot of this rhetoric really is
counterproductive. It is un-American. It is what a president
should not be doing.”

The bombs this week were sent to
prominent Democrats and frequent targets of right-wing criticism,
including former President Barack Obama, former Secretary of
State Hillary Clinton, billionaire Democratic donor George Soros,
Democratic Reps. Debbie Wasserman Schultz and Maxine Waters, and
former Attorney General Eric Holder.

But Brennan’s hope that the incidents might mark a “turning
point” in Trump’s rhetoric may have been quickly dashed on
Thursday, after Trump appeared to blame the fraught political
climate on the media.

“A very big part of the Anger we see today in our society is
caused by the purposely false and inaccurate reporting of the
Mainstream Media that I refer to as Fake News,” Trump tweeted Thursday morning.
“It has gotten so bad and hateful that it is beyond description.
Mainstream Media must clean up its act, FAST!”

Brennan tweeted his own response,
calling Trump’s behavior “disgraceful.”

“Stop blaming others. Look in the mirror. Your inflammatory
rhetoric, insults, lies, & encouragement of physical violence
are disgraceful,” he said. “Clean up your act….try to act
Presidential. The American people deserve much better. BTW, your
critics will not be intimidated into silence.”

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