Donald Trump will make Russia great again
What influence did Russia try to exert on the outcome of the US election? Political Washington is preoccupied with this question shortly before the weekend. On Friday morning it was announced that US President Barack Obama had ordered an investigation into the matter. Obama's adviser Lisa Monaco said the intelligence services report should be available before the end of his term on January 20.
In the evening the reports Washington Post from a "secret assessment" by the CIA. Accordingly, Russia intervened in the US election campaign to bring Republican Donald Trump into the White House. The secret services have identified individuals "with ties to the Russian government" who have leaked thousands of hacked emails to Wikileaks representatives. Wikileaks boss Assange said in a TV interview that "the Kremlin is not the source".
The post quoted a senior US official as saying that all 17 intelligence services agreed on this assessment. The result was presented to influential US senators. However, Mitch McConnell, the most powerful Republican in the Senate, expressed doubts about the veracity of the information in September.
For months, the Obama administration had been debating what the appropriate reaction would be without causing an escalation in relations with Russia - and not exposing itself to the accusation of openly supporting Hillary Clinton. McConnell reportedly did Washingtonpost, threatened to discredit the CIA information as "partisan influence".
On October 7, the US government officially blamed Moscow for hacking attacks (details here). At the time, a statement by the US Homeland Security Service (DHS) said that the hackers wanted to disrupt the ongoing election campaign: "Such activities are not new to Moscow. The Russians have used similar tactics and techniques in Europe and Eurasia, for example the influencing public opinion. " However, there was no accusation that Moscow wanted to help Trump.
Trump reacts - and mocks the secret services
While most of the US media are waiting, Donald Trump is not holding back - and giving that post-Report a particular relevance. Under the headline "Notice of allegation of foreign interference in the US election", Trump's team published a succinct notice in which the secret services are attacked and ridiculed.
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Literally it says, "These are the same people who said Saddam Hussein possessed weapons of mass destruction. The election was over a long time ago and ended in one of the greatest victories in the world electoral college any times. Now we have to look ahead and 'make America great again'. "The fact that Trump spreads untruths (he received fewer votes than Clinton and his lead in the electoral college is rather average) has almost become used to it. But that of the future president Mocking one's own secret services on a Friday evening is remarkable.
A few hours after the Washington Post also published the New York Timesa similar report. It explains in more detail how the intelligence agents came to their conclusion: They are convinced that Russian hackers can also use e-mails from the Republican National Committee (RNC) have tapped. However, the fact that these were not published by Wikileaks or other websites shows a clear partisanship. Some Conservative MPs spoke about the RNC hack in the fall - the statements were frantically withdrawn.
The fact that Trump seems to reject any clarification and shows no interest in improving confidence in the legitimacy of the elections is astonishing not only among Democrats. For months, Trump has insisted on not believing that Russia would interfere. Trump has long been benevolent of Russian President Vladimir Putin, with whom he wants to cooperate in the fight against IS in particular. It wasn't until this week that he said that Time Magazine after his freestyle "Person of the Year" that "Russia, China or some guy in New Jersey" could be behind the hacks.
Other Republicans want to examine Russia's attacks in the Senate
Also because of such statements by Trump, several Democratic senators loudly urged Obama to publish more details about the cyber attacks. Trump's refusal to accept the intelligence of the secret services causes heads to shake even among Republicans (according to consistent media reports, he is also skipping meetings with the secret services, which are supposed to inform him about security policy and threats).
Republican Senator John McCain, who chairs the Defense Committee, and his colleague Lindsey Graham announced on Thursday extensive investigations into Russia's influence. They fear that Moscow's hackers may have stolen sensitive information from the military.
In this respect, it seems doubtful that Donald Trump will get away with his confrontational stance and ridicule of the CIA.
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