Maya Alleruzzo/Associated Press
Update ET at 12:08 PM
Members of Congress on both sides asked for a reply on Monday regarding the bounty paid by Russian agents to the Afghan insurgents against the US military.
These stories seem to surprise even the most senior legislators, who say they hope to be notified by the Ministry of Defense and the intelligence community soon.
Senior member of the House Armed Forces Committee, Rep. Mac Thornberry of Texas R. Texas said: “I think it is absolutely vital to get information and judge its credibility.”
This story unfolds on two parallel tracks in Washington based on two key issues:
First, what actually happened? Due to the targeted actions taken by Russia, has the US military been killed? Second: Who knows the reports on these allegations from the Afghan action level?
The White House tried to defend itself on two charges over the weekend, saying that senior intelligence officials do not believe the reliability of the report and that they never personally reached President Trump or Vice President Pence.
House Speaker Nancy Pelosi usually receives some of the most sensitive intelligence briefings as a member of the so-called eight-member coalition congressman. She said she was not informed, and sent a letter on Monday asking for all houses soon.
New York State Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer (Chuck Schumer) asked to notify all members of the Senate.
Pelosi cited reports from The New York Times and The Washington Post that Trump had been aware of this bounty since the beginning of the year, but he and his representatives took no action.
She wrote: “The government’s disturbing silence and inaction threaten the lives of our troops and allies.”
The other top legislator in the House of Representatives asking for more information is Representative Liz Cheney The third Republican leader of the Wyoming House of Representatives.
If reports about Russia’s reward for the US military are true, the White House must explain:
1. Why not brief the president or vice president? Is this information in the PDB?
2. Who knows when?
3. What has been done to protect our troops and hold Putin accountable?
-Liz Cheney (@Liz_Cheney) June 28, 2020
Although both Trump and the Director of the National Intelligence Agency, John Ratcliffe, have stated that they have not introduced the so-called bounty to the President, the Office of the Director of the National Intelligence Agency has not stated whether the report has been included in the written notification submitted to the United States. in. President
Past reports indicate that Trump has not read many of the President’s Daily Briefs, but prefers to hear letters from personal intelligence hosts, but even so, according to the latest work of former national security adviser John Bolton , Trump’s speech is more than listening.
This raises questions about the practice of passing information to the president that the president may not want or want to hear.
For example, former officials have stated that they learned not to talk to Trump about Russian interference in the US elections, and the president has always been critical and skeptical.
Another example includes reports that Trump received warnings about coronavirus in his daily briefing but did not absorb these warnings. The White House detailed two specific information about the virus that Trump received earlier this year.
Richard Grenell, a former agent of the National Intelligence Agency, temporarily held the position until Ratcliffe confirmed it. Say on Twitter He found no reports about the so-called bounty behavior.
I haven’t heard how you continue to politicize intelligence is disgusting. You obviously do not understand how the original Intel was verified. Leaking part of the information from anonymous sources to reporters is dangerous because people like you manipulate information for political gain. https://t.co/403X9AVGAC
-Richard Glennell (@RichardGrenell) June 27, 2020
Intelligence services are tight
Who knows when Washington is an old game, but Trump’s long-standing aversion to the intelligence community now makes the situation even more complicated.
The president disputed with his assistants and advisers on the assessment of other issues such as the nuclear programs of Russia and North Korea.
Over the years, there have been reports that Russian paramilitary or intelligence activities in Afghanistan have affected the US military. A senior general said that Russian agents are helping the Taliban to provide weapons or supplies. Former Defense Secretary James Mattis also expressed concern.
The overall situation has never occurred, but with the development of the local situation in Afghanistan, Washington’s activities in the capital, intelligence processing and intelligence processing methods have also changed, and the capital has experienced many tensions involving spy agencies.
It is unclear what practices intelligence agencies may have taken to deal with intelligence related to so-called bounty programs, and whether they continue to evaluate them, or different agencies may come to different conclusions (which sometimes happen).
In other words, has the National Defense Intelligence Agency or one of its military departments found evidence of bounty in Afghanistan, but has Moscow’s intentions not been confirmed from the eavesdropping National Security Agency or the Central Intelligence Agency engaged in espionage?
The involvement of overseas allies may also complicate processing and reporting. British “Sky News” reported that the British army may also have been used as a target in exchange for the bounty paid by Russian troops, while members of Parliament hoped that Prime Minister Boris Johnson would clarify.
It was clear on Monday that MPs wanted to resolve these issues quickly. Sunbury of the House Armed Services Committee said that the security of the US and Allied forces may depend on it.
He said: “When you deal with the lives of our service personnel, especially in Afghanistan, especially when these allegations of Americans are rewarded for death or injury, that is very serious.” “We Congress need to see information and sources to judge For yourself, this needs to happen early this week. Know that delay is unacceptable.”
NPR Congress correspondent Claudia Grisales contributed to this report.