US President Donald Trump on Tuesday fired a top cybersecurity official who had rejected his baseless claims of electoral fraud. Trump took to Twitter to announce that Chris Krebs has been “terminated” as the Cybersecurity and Infrastructure Security Agency (Cisa) chief for his “highly inaccurate” statement on the security of the elections.
“The recent statement by Chris Krebs on the security of the 2020 Election was highly inaccurate, in that there were massive improprieties and fraud – including dead people voting,” claimed Trump, which was promptly flagged by the micro-blogging platform as “disputed”.
The US president recently fired Mark Esper as Defense Secretary as the duo was at loggerheads over the issues of troops withdrawal from Afghanistan and deployment of the military during Black Lives Matter protests. Trump, through his actions, has made it clear that officials contradicting him on key issues will be shown the door.
US media reports suggest that FBI director Christopher Wray could be the next on Trump’s firing line due to his testimony during congressional hearings on Russian interference and alleged electoral fraud. Wray had confirmed that Russia was using a range of measures to “primarily denigrate” Joe Biden and what it sees as an anti-Russia “establishment.” He also denied any evidence indicating widespread voter fraud, a claim regularly repeated by Trump ahead of the elections.
Last month, the FBI Agents Association sent open letters to Trump and Biden, urging the next president to allow Wray to continue until his 10-year term ends in 2027. “This country needs stability in leadership of the Bureau during these challenging times, and creating upheavals at the Bureau after the elections can only undermine the goal of protecting the safety and security of our country,” the organisation wrote.
According to a CNN report, Trump and his allies have become increasingly frustrated by CIA Director Gina Haspel for constantly pushing back on declassification of documents related to Russian interference in the 2016 presidential elections. Haspel was also reportedly not part of Trump’s in-person daily intelligence briefing on Friday, which was organised by the Director of National Intelligence, John Ratcliffe.