Tags: Russia | clapper | whelan | russia | butina

Clapper: Unlikely Paul Whelan Is a 'Genuine Operative'

james clapper
James Clapper (Martinez Monsivais/AP)

By    |   Friday, 04 January 2019 02:52 PM

Former Director of National Intelligence James Clapper says it is not likely that American Paul Whelan, who has been charged with espionage by the Russians, is an operative.

Clapper made his remarks during a Friday interview on CNN’s “New Day.” The show posted a video excerpt of the interview on its Twitter account.

Whelan was arrested two weeks ago in Moscow after Russian gun-rights activist Maria Butina pleaded guilty in the U.S. to conspiring to act as a foreign agent by trying to infiltrate conservative circles to influence politics.

 “Well, I see a tit for tat thing here,” Clapper said. “I think Putin was probably personally offended by the Butina case and her guilty plea. And two weeks later they snatched somebody. One thing (the Russians) are very good at is contriving evidence.  I think that’s what they’re doing here.

“I think this was a thing that was just offensive to Putin personally, so he had to do something about it. Russians aren’t bothered with things like the rule of law, evidence and that sort of thing.

“I think it is very unlikely that (Whelan) was a genuine operative.”

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Former Director of National Intelligence James Clapper says it is not likely that American Paul Whelan, who has been charged with espionage by the Russians, is an operative.
clapper, whelan, russia, butina
189
2019-52-04
Friday, 04 January 2019 02:52 PM
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