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By Michael McGowan,
The Guardian, UK,
17 October 2017

Donald Trump`s Twitter use is a risk to global security, Hillary Clinton says

Defeated presidential candidate also tells Australia`s Four Corners program that Wikileaks is now "a fully owned subsidiary of Russian intelligence"

Donald Trump`s Twitter account represents a "clear and present danger" to world security, Hillary Clinton has argued.

In an interview on Australian television aired on Monday night Clinton said the Trump`s presidency "certainly is" a risk not just to the US but also "the rest of the world, including Australia".

Because, she said, of his "use of Twitter", and his "conducting diplomacy or the lack thereof on Twitter".

In a wide-ranging interview with ABC Four Corner`s Sarah Ferguson, Clinton said she believed Trump was the most dangerous president the US had ever had.

"I think he is, because he is impulsive, he lacks self-control, he is totally consumed by how he is viewed and what people think of him," she said.

"So his behaviour traits and his lack of knowledge about how government works and his very, you know, limited curiosity about how to educate himself to actually make better decisions, are quite worrisome."

Asked whether Australians should be worried, Clinton said "I think the whole world should be concerned".

During the interview Clinton has repeated her claim that the WikiLeaks founder, Julian Assange, colluded with the Russian government in the lead-up to the 2016 US election, describing him as a "nihilistic opportunist who does the bidding of a dictator".

She alleged that Assange cooperated with the Russian president, Vladimir Putin, to disrupt the US election and damage her campaign for president.

"WikiLeaks is unfortunately now practically a fully owned subsidiary of Russian intelligence," Clinton told the ABC`s Sarah Ferguson.

Describing Putin as a "dictator", Clinton said the damaging email leaks that crippled her 2016 candidacy were part of a coordinated operation against her, directed by the Russian government.

"Our intelligence community and other observers of Russia and Putin have said he held a grudge against me because as secretary of state, I stood up against some of his actions, his authoritarianism," Clinton told the ABC.

"But it`s much bigger than that. He wants to destabilise democracy, he wants to undermine America, he wants to go after the Atlantic alliance, and we consider Australia an extension of that."

WikiLeaks received thousands of hacked emails from accounts connected to the Democratic campaign allegedly stolen by Russian operatives. The emails were released during a four-month period in the lead-up to the US election.

Emails from the Clinton campaign chairman, John Podesta, were leaked on the same day - 7 October 2016 - the director of national intelligence and the secretary of homeland security released a statement concluding the Russian government had been attempting to interfere in the election.

It was also the day the Washington Post published the 2005 Access Hollywood recording of Donald Trump`s lewd comments about sexually harassing women.

Clinton told the ABC she believed the email leak was coordinated to disrupt the influence of the Access Hollywood tape.

"WikiLeaks, which in the world in which we find ourselves promised hidden information, promised some kind of secret that might be of influence, was a very clever, diabolical response to the Hollywood Access tape," she said. "And I`ve no doubt in my mind that there was some communication if not coordination to drop those the first time in response to the Hollywood Access tape."

Clinton is promoting her election memoir, What Happened, in which she details her thoughts on her unsuccessful campaign for president.

In September she told David Remnick from the New Yorker that she believed the Australian founder of WikiLeaks may be "on the payroll of the Kremlin".

"I think he is part nihilist, part anarchist, part exhibitionist, part opportunist, who is either actually on the payroll of the Kremlin or in some way supporting their propaganda objectives, because of his resentment toward the United States, toward Europe," she said.

"He`s like a lot of the voices that we`re hearing now, which are expressing appreciation for the macho authoritarianism of a Putin. And they claim to be acting in furtherance of transparency, except they never go after the Kremlin or people on that side of the political ledger."

Assange has denied the emails came from the Russian government or any other "state parties".

In response to Clinton`s comments, Assange said on Twitter there was "something wrong with Hillary Clinton".

"It is not just her constant lying," he wrote. "It is not just that she throws off menacing glares and seethes thwarted entitlement.

"Something much darker rides along with it. A cold creepiness rarely seen."


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