Mike Cernovich, the professional troll who has targeted everyone from feminists to journalists, has apparently found a new target — civil servants who he suspects aren't kissing the ring of his Great Leader, President Donald Trump.
One piece attacked Eric Ciaramella, an assistant to National Security Advisor H.R. McMaster, for being too harsh on Russia, according to a report by Foreign Policy. He also accused Ciaramella of being behind leaks that made the White House look bad, most notably that Trump had bragged about firing FBI Director James Comey to Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov and that he had shared Israeli classified information without authorization at that time. After Ciaramella left his post (with many suspecting that Cernovich's attacks were the reason why), Cernovich began criticizing the unnamed individual believed to be tapped as Ciaramella's successor.
"It’s singling people out and then publicly engaging in character assassination,"Bruce Reidel, a former CIA officer who now works at the Brookings Institute, told Foreign Policy. "It will certainly send an intimidating effect throughout the bureaucracy." Similarly Charles Kupchan, the senior director for European Affairs on the National Security Council under President Barack Obama, said that the attacks on civil servants are "unprecedented" within his "professional recollection."
Cernovich has gained considerable clout since the rise of the Trumps. He has obtained White House press credentials and has demonstrated an insider's knowledge of the administration, such as revealing hours in advance that Trump was planning an air strike against Syria.
In terms of his background, Cernovich is both a disturbing choice of media point-man for the Trump administration and an oddly fitting one. In a profile by The New Yorker last year, Cernovich bragged about his self-perceived skills as a womanizer, which is consistent with his earlier career selling "locker room talk" to the public. He has subsequently turned his attention to liberals and feminists of all stripes, becoming a staple of the conspiracy theory circuit from his promotion of the discredited Pizzagate claims to his appearances on Alex Jones' program Infowars.