US security agencies incurred 'enormous damage' during Trump administration: Biden

WION Web Team
WASHINGTON Published: Dec 29, 2020, 07:39 AM(IST)

File photo of US President-elect Joe Biden Photograph:( AFP )

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Biden said, “Most notable the Department of Defence, we encountered obstruction from the political leadership. The truth is, many of the agencies that are critical to our security have incurred enormous damage.”

President-elect Joe Biden on Monday said under the Trump administration, US government agencies in charge of national security have “incurred enormous damage.”

Painting a grim landscape of the state of the nation's national security and foreign policy agencies he said that those departments have been "hollowed out in personnel, capacity and in morale."

Biden said, “Most notable the Department of Defence, we encountered obstruction from the political leadership. The truth is, many of the agencies that are critical to our security have incurred enormous damage.” He added that the actions of the Trump administration “makes it harder for our government to protect the American people, to defend our vital interests”. 
 

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The president-elect's comments followed a briefing from members of his national security and foreign policy agency review teams "on their findings and key challenges that the Biden-Harris administration will inherit," his transition team said before his remarks.

Biden said it's crucial to ensure "nothing is lost" during the change in presidential administrations and stressed the need for his team to have a "clear picture" of the country's force posture worldwide and operations to deter enemies, as well as "full visibility" into the budget planning underway at the Pentagon and other agencies to "avoid any window of confusion or catch-up" that can be exploited by enemies.

"We have encountered roadblocks from the political leadership at the Department of Defense and the Office of Management and Budget," Biden said. "Right now, we just aren't getting all the information that we need from the outgoing administration in key national security areas. It's nothing short in my view of irresponsibility."

(With inputs from agencies)

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