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Wash Post: CIA Assessment Concludes Putin Was Trying to Help Trump Win White House

Image: Wash Post: CIA Assessment Concludes Putin Was Trying to Help Trump Win White House

By    |   Friday, 09 Dec 2016 08:02 PM

The CIA has concluded that Russia interfered in the 2016 election to help Donald Trump win the presidency, according to a secret assessment disclosed on Friday.

"It is the assessment of the intelligence community that Russia’s goal here was to favor one candidate over the other, to help Trump get elected," a senior U.S. official told The Washington Post. "That’s the consensus view."

The official was briefed on an intelligence presentation made by the CIA to U.S. senators, the Post reports.

Late Friday night, the Trump transition team released a short statement seemingly mocking the story: "These are the same people that said Saddam Hussein had weapons of mass destruction. The election ended a long time ago in one of the biggest Electoral College victories in history. It’s now time to move on and 'Make America Great Again.'"

According to the Post, American intelligence agencies identified "individuals with connections to the Russian government who provided WikiLeaks with thousands of hacked emails from the Democratic National Committee and others, including Hillary Clinton’s campaign chairman.

"Those officials described the individuals as actors known to the intelligence community and part of a wider Russian operation to boost Trump and hurt Clinton’s chances."

Clinton long has charged that Russia was meddling in the election — and President Barack Obama ordered intelligence officials to review the widespread election-season hacking.

Republican Sen. Lindsey Graham of South Carolina also declared that he was chairing several investigations into Russia because he wanted President Vladimir Putin "personally to pay a price."

But Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell doubted the credibility of any intelligence linking Russia to any elections tampering in a secret briefing for Congress in September, the Post reports.

Trump also has dismissed concerns about Russian hacking.

"I don’t believe they interfered," he told Time magazine this week.

The hacking, "could be Russia," he said. "And it could be China. And it could be some guy in his home in New Jersey."

According to the Post, the CIA briefed top senators last week on its latest assessment, citing growing evidence from "multiple sources."

They said it was now "quite clear" Moscow's goal was to elect Trump, said the officials, who spoke to the Post on the condition of anonymity.

Last week's CIA presentation, however, fell short of a formal U.S. assessment produced by all 17 intelligence agencies, the Post reports.

A senior U.S. official said minor disagreements had occurred among intelligence officials about the agency’s assessment, in part because various questions remain unanswered.

"We may have crossed into a new threshold, and it is incumbent upon us to take stock of that, to review, to conduct some after-action, to understand what has happened and to impart some lessons learned," Lisa Monaco, Obama's counterterrorism and homeland security adviser, said at a breakfast sponsored by The Christian Science Monitor.

President Obama wants the report before he leaves office Jan. 20, Monaco said, the Post reports.

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The CIA has concluded that Russia interfered in the 2016 election to help Donald Trump win the presidency, according to a secret assessment disclosed on Friday. It is the assessment of the intelligence community that Russia's goal here was to favor one candidate over the...
cia, assessment, putin, helped, trump, win, white, house
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2016-02-09
Friday, 09 Dec 2016 08:02 PM
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