President Obama blamed the U.S. intelligence community for the rise of the Islamic State on Sunday's 60 Minutes.
But intelligence officials are pushing back, saying there is a paper trail that proves Obama knew of the growing threat from the Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant (ISIL or ISIS) for quite some time.
The president blamed Director of National Intelligence James Clapper for "underestimating" the threat ISIL posed to the region and to Western countries. But officials say Obama received daily briefs on the rising threat going back to February.
"I mean, publicly, there's a paper trail of intelligence officials before Congress saying ISIS is a problem," CBS This Morning host Norah O’Donnell said.
Co-host Charlie Rose agreed, saying Obama dodged accountability for the rise of ISIL in Iraq and Syria and essentially threw the intelligence community under the bus.
"Clearly there is a pushback on the part of the intelligence community saying ‘we tried to tell you,'" Rose said.
Sen. John McCain (R., Ariz.) refuted Obama’s comments Sunday on CNN’s New Day:
"We predicted this and watched it," McCain said." "It was like watching a train wreck and warning every step of the way that this was happening."
White House Press Secretary Josh Earnest attempted to quiet the backlash yesterday during his daily briefing. "[Obama] is the one ultimately responsible for protecting the security interests of the United States of America all around the globe," Earnest said. "There's no question he relies on important advice from leaders in military, leaders in the diplomatic corps and leaders in the community."