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Trump threatens informants in their own ranks in a whistleblower affair


"Spies and betrayal, we used to do it differently": With this sentence, the US President turns to the informants of the anonymous whistleblower. The message should be clear.

In the affair of the whistleblower and the alleged unlawful behavior of the US President, the sound is getting shriller. In a now released sound recording, Donald Trump seems to threaten the whistleblower's informant little or not.

First, the New York Times reported the incident. The "Los Angeles Times" then released an audio file with a recording to hear the President. Other US media cite the exchange as well.

The photo was taken during a private appointment at a hotel in New York, where the president thanked those responsible for organizing the past four days of the UN General Assembly. But with mere words of thanks it did not stay.

Trump talks about the person or persons who have provided the whistleblower with information. After all, the whistleblower admitted that he had not been in the room with Trump's delicate phone call to Ukrainian President Volodymyr Selenskyj.

In the video: Impeachment - how does it work?


"I want to know who gave the information to the whistleblower, because that's pretty close to spying," Trump said. And then he says, "You know how we dealt with things when we were smart, right? Spies and betrayals, we used to do that differently than we do today."

Trump will not continue, but the message may have arrived. Several US media decipher his statements as a moderately veiled threat of capital punishment.

Trump compares whistleblower's sources to 'spies', makes reference to executions like the old days @Boris_Sanchez reports

- The Lead CNN (@TheLeadCNN) September 26, 2019

Of course, this is not an official statement from the president. Trump and his team should and should have been aware that details of the private appointment, in which around 50 people were present, would leak out.

Identity should remain secret

It is still unclear who is both the whistleblower himself and his informant. However, according to the New York Times, the whistleblower should be an analyst of the CIA. The newspaper relied on three different sources that knew the identity of the informant.

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The man was temporarily turned off in the White House, but then returned to the CIA. Therefore, he did not work in a team that oversees the communication of the US president with other heads of state.

The whistleblower's lawyers did not want to confirm that their client works for the CIA, according to the New York Times. They warned that the publication of information that could lead to its identification was "highly worrying and reckless". Your client could be "endangered," said lawyer Andrew Bakaj. The president's recent statements should not have shattered concerns.

Read the whistleblower's complaint about the US president here:

Download PDF

Whistleblower's complaint about Trump (pdf) PDF size: 4 MB

The law protects informants - actually

US intelligence coordinator Joseph Maguire had previously defended the whistleblower. He thinks he did the right thing and acted "in good faith", according to Maguire.

To protect the identity of the informant, Maguire said, "We must protect those who have the courage to report misconduct - whether on the battlefield or at work." The identity of the man is protected by US laws designed to encourage government employees to report serious wrongdoing by their superiors.

In his statements on the audio Trump also leaves in a condescending tone on the press. "These are animals, some of the worst people there are," says Trump, who has repeatedly struck dehumanizing statements about media outlets in the past. Once again, he said, "Those are scum, many of them are scum, there are good reporters too, but that's not many."

Source: spiegel

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