Is This What's Going On With Trump and Bannon?
From Hot Air:
H.R. McMaster was appointed NSA six weeks ago. If Bannon’s role on the Council ended with Flynn’s departure, why is he only being removed now? Have he and McMaster spent the past six weeks in a power struggle over whether he should remain on the Council, with Trump finally ruling in McMaster’s favor? Bannon himself offered a second explanation for his removal to the WSJ:
Mr. Bannon said in a statement:
“Susan Rice operationalized the NSC during the last administration. I was put on to ensure that it was de-operationalized. General McMaster has returned the NSC to its proper function.”
Is that the truth or an excuse conveniently timed to capitalize on the media attention this week to Susan Rice’s possible role in unmasking Trump personnel in surveillance reports last year?
It seems too cute by half.
But remember, one of the people who reportedly helped Devin Nunes access the intelligence reports he saw on incidental surveillance of Trumpers was Ezra Cohen-Watnick, the senior director for intelligence programs on the National Security Council. McMaster wanted Cohen-Watnick moved to a different position within the NSC after Flynn left — but Bannon and Jared Kushner intervened with Trump to keep him in place.
Was that because Bannon knew Cohen-Watnick was digging around on Rice’s “unmasking” measures and wanted him to continue, knowing that that story would be a useful counter to the Russiagate attacks on Trump?
If so, with the Rice stuff now out in the open, Bannon might no longer see a reason to continue on the NSC.GO READ THE WHOLE THING.