House Intelligence Committee Chairman Mike Rogers Friday accused Russian intelligence agencies of withholding information on Tamerlan Tsarnaev that could have been helpful to U.S. authorities before the Boston bombings.
Rogers also told Fox News that Russia hasn’t been very cooperative in the wake of the bombings either, The Hill reported
“The Russians I think have a lot more information here than they are sharing today,” Rogers said. “They’ve kind of let us peek under the curtain a little bit, but it’s very clear to me that they have valuable information that, A, they should have provided earlier, and B, that we need to get now to understand what happened when he went back to Russia.”
Tsarnaev visited Russia for six months in 2012 and U.S. authorities have been trying to sort out details of the trip to determine whether he was influenced by Islamist or Chechen extremists while there.
“I think the Russians need to cooperate more than they are now to fully understand those six months. I just don’t think they’re there yet,’ Rogers said.
Rogers added that U.S. intelligence agencies had a rough time evaluating information from the Russian authorities because they often plant disinformation to make trouble for political opponents.
“Sometimes when working with certain intelligence groups with the Russians, they would give derogatory information about somebody that they politically did not align with, so the FBI had to sort all of that out,” Rogers says. “They had to take this information with a grain of salt. And [the Russians] didn’t give them a lot.”
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