Donald Trump has already sought to retaliate against the whistleblower in such vicious, public, and illegal fashion, it raises the question of who else is being targeted in a similar manner. Now it turns out key impeachment witness Colonel Vindman is suddenly being reassigned from his White House post – and suffice it to say that something doesn’t smell right.
Donald Trump’s latest National Security Adviser Robert O’Brien appeared on Face The Nation on Sunday and revealed that Colonel Vindman is being removed from the National Security Council and sent back to the Department of Defense. O’Brien said that Vindman is one of several NSC people who are being removed from the White House, and that it’s simply because O’Brien – who is new on the job – wants a smaller NSC comprised of new people.
Donald Trump changes National Security Advisers faster than Trump’s handlers change his diaper, so we’re not sure yet what to make of O’Brien. The problem is that we’ve seen this from Trump before. When he first took office, he decided to keep dozens of existing U.S. Attorneys in place. But a short time later, after he realized the Trump-Russia investigation was likely to result in federal criminal charges being brought against his underlings in New York City, he realized he needed to fire Preet Bharara from the SDNY accordingly. So Trump simultaneously fired forty-seven U.S. Attorneys, Bharara being one of them, to try to make it look like he wasn’t just targeting Bharara.
So no, we wouldn’t be shocked at all if Donald Trump told Robert O’Brien to get rid of large chunks of the National Security Council just to make it look like he’s not singularly targeting Colonel Vindman and other people who are testifying against him in the House impeachment inquiry. Vindman isn’t the whistleblower. But because Vindman came forward through proper channels, it would be illegal for Trump to retaliate against him. This needs to be investigated to the hilt.
Bill Palmer is the publisher of the political news outlet Palmer Report