Former intel chief says WH worried over re-elect 'narrative'
Washington (CNN)President Barack Obama's former top military intelligence official said Tuesday that the White House ignored reports prefacing the rise of ISIS in 2011 and 2012 because they did not fit its re-election "narrative."
"I think that they did not meet a narrative the White House needed. And I'll be very candid with you, they just didn't," retired Lt. Gen. Michael Flynn, the former head of the Defense Intelligence Agency, told CNN's Jake Tapper on "The Lead."
Flynn, who has been critical of both Obama's and former President George W. Bush's handling of the Iraq War and involvement in the Middle East, said that Obama was served poorly by a small circle of advisers who were worried about his re-election prospects at the time.
The story they needed to tell, he said, was that pulling troops from Iraq would not leave the region vulnerable to the rise of a radical Islamic group like ISIS.
"I think the narrative was that al Qaeda was on the run, and (Osama) bin Laden was dead. ... They're dead and these guys are, we've beaten them," Flynn said -- but the problem was that no matter how many terrorist leaders they killed, they "continue to just multiply."
Obama has been criticized by opponents for referring to ISIS as the "JV squad" and apparently underestimating the group's threat. The Pentagon's inspector general is investigating complaints that top intelligence officials manipulated reports to make the threat of ISIS look minimal.
Obama called ISIS the 'jayvee team'....
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