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Michael Hayden: Russian Hack Is 'Honorable State Espionage'

Michael Hayden: Russian Hack Is 'Honorable State Espionage'

 Michael Hayden (Alex Wong/Getty Images)

By    |   Tuesday, 18 October 2016 09:05 PM

Russia's hack of Democratic National Committee emails was "honorable state espionage" – and the United States apparently isn't above using the tactic on foreign political parties, according to former CIA and NSA head Michael Hayden.

At a Heritage Foundation on-stage interview Tuesday,  Hayden said the difference between U.S. actions and Russia's DNC breach is that "once [Moscow] got that information, they weaponized it," The Hill reported. 

"I have to admit my definition of what the Russians did [in hacking the DNC] is, unfortunately, honorable state espionage," said Hayden, who served as the director of the NSA between 1999 and 2005, and as director of the CIA between 2006 and early 2009.

"A foreign intelligence service getting the internal emails of a major political party in a major foreign adversary? Game on. That’s what we do."

"By the way, I would not want to be in an American court of law and be forced to deny that I never did anything like that as director of the NSA," he added.

Hayden said Vladimir Putin was likely emboldened to attack "because he is convinced we do this to him all the time. We don’t," adding he believes Putin is trying to roil the election process.

The Russia problem is a lot larger than cybersecurity, he said.

"Do not drop this in the cyber problem box," he said, The Hill reported. "Drop this in the Russia problem box. Do not treat this by its means, treat it by its actor. By the way, that Russia problem box – we’re going to need a bigger box.”

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Russia's hack of Democratic National Committee emails was honorable state espionage - and the United States apparently isn't above using the tactic on foreign political parties, according to former CIA and NSA head Michael Hayden.At a Heritage Foundation on-stage...
michael hayden, russian, hack, honorable state espionage
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2016-05-18
Tuesday, 18 October 2016 09:05 PM
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