Retired Lt. General Jerry Boykin, currently executive vice president of the Family Research Council, addressed the resignation of National Security Adviser Michael Flynn on Wednesday’s Breitbart News Daily with SiriusXM host Alex Marlow.
“Let’s just cut right to the chase: I feel like there is a lot more questions that are open than questions that have been answered on Mike Flynn and his resignation. Your thoughts?” Marlow asked.
“I think you’re dead on,” Boykin replied. “I think there’s a lot more than we’ve seen that’s going to come out on this when the final bell is rung.”
He said it was important to remember that Flynn is “not loved by the intelligence community” because he pushed them to “modernize and be creative” and adapt to “the wars that we were fighting in Iraq and Afghanistan, while they were still trying to use, for the most part, a Cold War paradigm.”
Boykin said it was Flynn’s drive for change and innovation that led to his ouster from the Defense Intelligence Agency in 2014.
“You ask yourself, why is so much information being leaked about what he said and who he talked to – which I think, by any standard, is a clear violation of federal statute,” he said. “And yet it’s happening. They’re getting away with it, and Mike Flynn has taken the fall for it.”
Boykin stressed that if Flynn truly misled Vice President Mike Pence about the content of his telephone conversations with the Russian ambassador, “there’s no question there will never be another trust between the two of them and probably not with the president either.”
“But I think Mike Flynn has been set up on this thing and brought down as a result of a very deliberate effort,” he added.
He recalled how the Obama administration was criticized for politicizing the intelligence community, which Boykin said was “one of the worst things you can do inside the government.” He said there was no question in his mind that Obama’s politicized intelligence community lashed out at Flynn.
“You want a big story? Don’t investigate Flynn. Investigate the intelligence community. Investigate those entities, those 16 entities to include INR at the State Department, and the DIA, and the NSA. Investigate them, and find out why they are leaking information that is otherwise classified and should be held very close,” he advised.
Boykin suggested President Trump begin by searching for leaks within the White House and “come down hard on anybody that is leaking information for any reason, positive or negative.”
“They’ve got to be either muzzled, or they’ve got to be put out of the administration. He’s got to build a team of people that he trusts, that he relies on. He’s got to implement procedures there that are, I think, a counter to allowing anybody to leak information out of there.”
“The second thing he’s got to do is, those people that are just part of a nefarious plot to hurt his administration, which are probably holdovers, leftovers from the Obama administration – he’s got to get rid of those people. He’s got to purge them. Clean house. Drain the swamp,” Boykin urged.
Boykin ran through some top candidates to replace Flynn as national security adviser, beginning with National Security Council Chief of Staff Keith Kellogg, whom he has known for 35 years.
“He’s a great American, and I think he’d do very well. Highly decorated, I might add, for valor. I think he would be good,” Boykin said.
“I think, also, Bob Harward, who is mentioned, as well,” he continued. “Bob has inter-agency experience. Bob has worked in the Joint Interagency Task Force. He has the experience to be able to do that, not to mention the fact that he was actually born in the Middle East and speaks Farsi and has a lot of experience over there.”
Boykin also said it would “not bother him in the least” if Flynn was succeeded by Sebastian Gorka, whom he called “a brilliant man” and “certainly very astute when it comes to the Islamic threats.” Gorka is currently deputy adviser to the president, and before that, he was national security editor for Breitbart News.
Marlow courteously added that Boykin himself has been mentioned as a candidate for national security adviser. He asked for more details about Harward, who topped his own list of successors to Flynn.
“Bob is a SEAL. Bob at one time was the aide to one of our more distinguished special operations officers, General Wayne Downing, who died very suddenly in 2007. Bob was his aide, and that’s where I first got to know him,” Boykin recalled.
“Ultimately, he went on to be ‘Mad Dog’ Mattis’s deputy, so they have a very good relationship,” he said, referring to Secretary of Defense James Mattis. “Bob’s been involved in lots of operations. Ultimately, he wound up there at U.S. Central Command.”
“He has quite a background, having been born, really, in Iran. I think his father was in the Foreign Service over in Iran. He went to high school there, and, in fact, he told me one time he either rode a bicycle or hitchhiked out of Iran, all the way up into Turkey. This is an adventurous guy. I think he would certainly make a good national security adviser,” he said.
Marlow asked if the resignation of Mike Flynn should be seen as part of a “coup happening from the Deep State,” or from Obama administration holdovers in the Justice Department and intelligence community.
“No, but I do think there are some people that are playing out their deepest fantasies, and they have some outside support and control,” Boykin replied. “I’m not prepared to call it a coup. I think that it’s going to turn around. I think the Justice Department is going to turn around with Jeff Sessions over there now, and there are probably going to be some people that are going to leave. There are going to be some acolytes of the Obama administration that are just simply not going to hang around.”
He pointed to former Acting Attorney General Sally Yates as “someone who had already made the decision to jump ship, but she was going to go out having a reputation for being a real supporter of the leftists’ causes.”
“I think that whole thing was a setup,” he said. “I think it was orchestrated for her to get fired. I think you’re going to see some more of that. You’ve got a lot of holdovers in these organizations. But as a general coup – look, the intelligence community as a whole is filled with some great Americans, people who have been denigrated whenever it was convenient to do so. There are some great Americans.”
“The problem is each administration has to put a certain number of people in those organizations, and when they hang on through the next administration, generally speaking, they are up to no good,” Boykin explained. “They are going to do something nefarious, and they’re going to try and preserve the legacy of the last president who put them in those positions. They do that by stirring up trouble for the incoming administration. That’s what you see unfolding right now, and Mike Flynn’s probably their first big trophy.”
Marlow concluded the interview by asking Boykin about Russia’s deployment of cruise missiles in apparent violation of arms treaties.
“This goes back to a 1986 strategic arms limitation treaty,” said Boykin. “I think they actually moved maybe two batteries of missiles. These missiles have nuclear warhead capabilities, so that’s the seriousness of it.”
“Secondly, it was a violation of that treaty of 1986, and thirdly, the Russians are doing this because not too long after that treaty was signed, they started saying they went into it too hastily, prematurely, because many of their neighbors, like China, still had nuclear weapons, and they needed to back out of the treaty, which America never agreed to. So they are right now pushing the envelope with us on the strategic arms limitation treaty,” he said.
“They’re doing so at a moment when Americans are distracted, when Trump is distracted, and what Trump’s going to have to do is come out fighting and draw some lines. Russia does not have to be the enemy that it is today, but the only way that we’re going to reduce the threat of Russia is by showing strength, just like Ronald Reagan did,” Boykin advised.
“I think Trump is going to – with his national security team, when he gets them put back together – he’s going to develop a strategy that will help him to deal with the Russians from a position of strength and probably discourage this kind of behavior in the future,” he predicted.
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