Russia is seeing opportunity in the chaos of the Middle East, and is "running the old KGB playbook" by planting fake news stories to make matters worse, Rep. Adam Kinzinger said Wednesday.
"In Russia, whenever there is chaos, there is opportunity," the Illinois Republican, a member of the House Foreign Affairs Committee, told CNN's "New Day" co-anchor Alisyn Camerota.
"They see an opportunity among chaos to either hurt the United States, to give Russia a play in the Middle East — so that's exactly their play here: they just want to sow chaos."
On Tuesday, CNN reported that investigators believe Russian hackers were able to breach into Qatar's state news agency and plant a fake news report.
This not only contributed to a crisis among the United state's closest Middle Eastern allies, but resulted in a tweet from President Donald Trump praising Saudi Arabia for its actions against Qatar.
"Russia doesn't care about chaos in the Middle East," Kinzinger said Wednesday. "They look at every opportunity as what can benefit them and what they see in the Gulf States is a coalition of people against Iran, a coalition of nations that really are friendly to the United States."
Kinzinger also said he does not believe Trump should become involved concerning the hack, and said he'd tell the president to "take a deep breath and move forward."
"When Russia plants fake news stories, this is where the whole world needs to be aware it didn't just happen in the United States, it's not just happening in Europe," he said. "Russia is running the old KGB playbook but they're using 21st century technology to do it."
Kinzinger later in the morning appeared on Fox News' "America's Newsroom," where he commented on Wednesday's terrorist attacks in Iran.
"It's opening a new front for ISIS," said the congressman. "We like to think look, we're competitors and enemies with Iran and enemies with ISIS. It's weird that ISIS would attack Iran. The reality is Iran is a Shia population. ISIS is predominantly Sunni.
"What you have now as ISIS is losing territory, keep in mind they can recruit people based on this idea of becoming prophesied next caliphate."
The United States and its allies need to double down on ISIS and "redouble our efforts to destroy this organization," Kinzinger continued.
The civilian casualties are also creating a psychological impact, with ISIS holding public executions of families who try to leave Raqqa, and Kinzinger said that's because "they are very demonic people. I guarantee the devil and his demons are enjoying what's happening over there."
Sandy Fitzgerald ✉
Sandy Fitzgerald has more than three decades in journalism and serves as a general assignment writer for Newsmax covering news, media, and politics.
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