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White House suggests Putin was involved in U.S. hacking

  • ASSOCIATED PRESS

    Russian President Vladimir Putin is seen in Nagato, western Japan, Thursday. The Obama administration suggested today that Putin personally authorized the hacking of Democratic officials’ email accounts in the run-up to the presidential election, which intelligence agencies believe was designed to help Donald Trump prevail.

WASHINGTON >> The Obama administration suggested today that Russian President Vladimir Putin personally authorized the hacking of Democratic officials’ email accounts in the run-up to the presidential election and said it was “fact” that hacking had helped President-elect Donald Trump’s campaign. The White House also leveled an astounding attack on Trump himself, saying he must have known of Russia’s interference.

No proof was offered for any of the accusations, the latest to unsettle America’s uneasy transition from eight years under Democratic President Barack Obama to a new Republican administration led by Trump. The claims of Russian meddling in the election also have heightened already debilitating tensions between Washington and Moscow over Syria, Ukraine and a host of other disagreements.

After an NBC News report quoted U.S. intelligence officials pointing the finger specifically at Putin, White House press secretary Josh Earnest pointed to an October assessment of the U.S. intelligence community saying that “only Russia’s senior-most officials could have authorized these activities.”

Earnest said the reference to “senior-most officials” wasn’t supposed to be subtle. “It’s pretty obvious,” he told reporters.

The explosive accusation paints the leader of perhaps the nation’s greatest geopolitical foe as having directly undermined U.S. democracy. No U.S. officials have claimed, however, that Trump would have been defeated by Hillary Clinton on Nov. 8 if not for Russia’s assistance. Nor has there has been any indication of tampering with the vote-counting.

The Kremlin flatly rejected the claim of Putin’s involvement, with Putin spokesman Dmitry Peskov today dismissing it as “laughable nonsense.”

The White House today also was harshly critical of Trump, who has dismissed the allegations of Russian interference as the partisan anger of Democrats over losing the election. Trump’s criticism has opened up a deep rift between the intelligence community and its incoming commander in chief.

It is “obvious” that Trump knew of Russia’s behavior during the campaign, Earnest said, also disputing Trump’s claim that he was joking when he encouraged Russia to find emails that Clinton had deleted from her private email server.

No one in the White House, Congress or the intelligence community found it “funny” that a U.S. adversary was trying to “destabilize our democracy,” he said.

U.S. intelligence officials have linked the hacking to Russia’s intelligence agency and its military intelligence division. Moscow has denied all accusations that it orchestrated the hacking of email accounts of Democratic Party officials and Clinton’s campaign chief, John Podesta, and then leaked them to the anti-secrecy website WikiLeaks.

Democrats pounced on the latest suggestions of Putin being connected to the daily drip of emails during the presidential race from some of Clinton’s closest advisers.

Putin was “clearly involved,” said outgoing Senate Minority Leader Harry Reid.

“Having been the former head of the KGB, does that surprise you?” Reid said. “And does it surprise anybody today when he denied it?”

On Wednesday, Sen. Dianne Feinstein of California, the senior Democrat on the Senate intelligence committee, said it is hard to think that Putin didn’t know about the operation. She called suggestions that he was aware of the hacking “very credible.”

There has been no specific, persuasive evidence shared publicly about the extent of Putin’s role or knowledge of the hackings. That lack of proof undercuts Democrats’ strategy to portray Putin’s involvement as irrefutable evidence of a directed Russian government plot to undermine America’s democratic system.

But Democrats theorize that no such wide-scale espionage operation could have been launched without Putin’s approval.

The NBC report said that the evidence is “nearly incontrovertible,” and that the intelligence comes from “diplomatic sources and spies working for U.S. allies.” It didn’t identify the countries involved or how they might have such sensitive information from Putin’s inner sanctum.

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  • If the dems were not so unethical in their support for Hillary, and against all others from the primaries to the general, there would not have been anything to report. It’s how they ran their party and what they did behind closed doors that became an embarrassment.

    • After 25 plus years of Repub. slander against the Clintons they finally won a round. While I’m semi retired I can sit back and watch the Repubs go worse than what Bush2 did. There was nothing unethical about the Dems support of Hillary. Think they should have supported Johnny come lately Bernie? I voted since 1966 and never heard of Sanders until a couple years ago and he’s 5 years older than I.

      • I guess “ethical” is just a state of mind. Your state of mind, on the other hand, seems to be a matter of history that never was. You think its ok to treat “Johnny come lately Bernie” any way at all because you never heard of him. Well you’re not saying much for yourself there!

        • I’m tired of hearing the whining from many. Voted Dem for 50 years and there have been candidates of both parties that had to put up with worse. I’ve always treated people with respect. It’s strange that Bernie jumps into Dem politics at an age that makes Reagan look young but it was his choice. Reagan was a long time Repub. Bernie joins the Dems to make a run because his own party was a joke.

      • What was unethical is the party pulling favors for 1 of their candidates while working against another 1 of their candidates. Directly working against the so called democracy the party is suppose to represent. Then shall we waltz over to the general election where Hillary accepts debate questions ahead of time again showing no ethics to keep the competition on fair terms neither refusing them nor offering them to Trump.

    • @ noheawilli
      Agree.
      Also there is a POLL just out showing 59% of voters believe the hacking didn’t make a difference.
      So no big deal.
      January 20, 2017 #MAGA

    • How did you get off the subject of Russian, Putin’s hack. Another distraction from the main subversion of our country by Putin and the Russians. Hope someone hacks into your accounts, see how you like it.

      • The emails came from Wikileaks.

        The Wikileaks people said that they were not from the Russians.

        More recently, Wikileaks people revealed that they came from an insider in the DNC.

        So they were not even hacks, they were leaks from someone who had access to them.

        I find this more credible than the innuendos, “top secret sources”, and other totally unproven and unsubstantiated nonsense coming from the Democrats and their surrogates.

        • Wikileaks is not a reputable organization. They are one of the worst of the hackers and the leakers, after Putin & the Russian KGB.

        • Go cry me a river Hannibal. You clowns did it to yourselves. So US intel knew in October, but we voted in November. Didn’t hear anybody crying then. Funny how emails and Hillary just seems to not get along. Seems like the jokes on her. Trump wins 2 terms. Get used to it scrubs.

    • People can’t just go off saying “fake news” every time they see something they disagree with. What about the article was fake? Are you saying the White House didn’t suggests Putin was involved in U.S. hacking?

        • Note “No proof was offered for any of the accusations” is direct quote from the paper- sounds like “fake news” to me…

        • “But Democrats theorize that no such wide-scale espionage operation could have been launched without Putin’s approval.” My kid just did science fair- theories need to be proven by scientific method- them Dems are not smart enough to even try to prove their “theory”.

        • That is my point. It appears that the article is correct and the reporter did their due diligence in not accepting the statement of the white house and adding the caveat “No proof was offered for any of the accusations.” Is fact they are also reporting what Russia has said about the topic. Calling it fake news is a lazy cop-out. The media here is doing their job and people who are bashing them are looking for someone to blame or looking to discredit everything they say.

          You may not believe the people quoted in a story or its conclusions if there are any, but that does not make the article “fake news”. Fake news is like the story about a pizza place being used as child sex ring, which was completely made up. There is a big difference.

        • IRT SteveDavis: Great comment, it seems everyone has a different definition of what Fake News is which is not a problem, the problem is we are using OUR definition of what Fake News to reply to others who might have a different usage of the term…#MAGA

        • IRT SteveDavis, let’s see, Josh Earnest, Harry Reid, and Diane Feinstein were quoted saying it’s the Russians. Then Dmitry Peskov that it’s all “laughable nonsense”. And, a few others un-named individuals with quotes. Smells like “Fake News” don’t you think?

        • There is proof. An Alpha Bank server communicating with a server in Trump Tower for many months. The CEO of the bank, a Fridman and a partner Alven, a close associates with Putin and gang. Fridman, just happens to be the 2nd richest man in Russia. See any connections?

        • Also, one of Trump’s loyal supporters is now in Moscow, trying to work out a deal to lower US and our allies sanctions against Russia, for having invaded Ukraine and annexed Crimea.

      • Steve…I’m saying that since it’s just an opinion from the White House, it’s basically ‘Fake News’ originating from Obama. It’s an attempt to deceive the readers just because the POTUS “suggests” it.

        • Today, Trump tweeted: “Has anyone looked at the really poor numbers of @VanityFair Magazine. Way down, big trouble, dead! Graydon Carter, no talent, will be out!”. Is reporting on that also considered fake news? That is also only his opinion rather than something for which he has offered any proof.

        • Yes but trumps tweets are not reported as truths or partial truths, they are printed as a joke. News media should just stop printing things printed just to flare opinions. News media should stick to printing facts, or what is generally accepted as factual. Leave the hype to National Enquirer.

        • Why would a US PE elect tweet about Vanity Fair? Is this guy really going to be our president? Vanity Fair? Cmon.

        • IRT Windward_Side: So when you say Fake News you aren’t addressing the Newspaper and Reporter, what you referring to is only the source of the article? #MAGA

        • IRT wave1: So what you are saying is that Trumps tweets aren’t taken seriously so it’s not Fake News what he tweets? News media printing only facts is what they did when they reported what was said, if they made up what was said then that would be Fake. News right? #MAGA

        • IRT jusris- Yes, when Trump sends a Tweet, news agencies should ignore, peeps can see his tweets on twitter if they like that sort of thing. Otherwise, news agencies need to stop printing this nonsense, they should report on real news like Aleppo, Syria…

      • And by Law/Electoral Votes The Donald is the P.E.
        Maybe you folks should print out the Popular Vote article, frame it& mail it to Crooked hiLIARy…make her feel better?

        January 20, 2017 #MAGA

        • Vector…take a break…for a month & a half & come back with a new nic….& try to be pleasant & by all means get informed!
          By then you’ll be happy to see how America is coming back from O’s ABYSS.

          President Trump & VP Pence…you’ll be proud again…if you remember what proud is.

  • If clinton and those who prop her up had been ethical in their dealings they would be nothing but boring emails to report. but instead the backstabbing and back office deals we all suspect happens became confirmed.

    I certainly hope the russians weren’t involved but sure does look like the democrats trying to put up smoke and mirrors rather than admit their shortcomings. anything online anywhere is hackable to those with the skills so could have been anyone from anywhere in the world.

  • If the Russians did hack the systems, it is unfortunate that the weak and ineffective administration of Obama did not know then and was unable
    to respond. The Russians and especially Putin has intimidated Obama to the point where Obama is afraid of Putin and the Russians.

  • Conflicts,conflicts,conflicts who needs um. Convicts,convicts,convicts who needs um.(#nohillaryinjail). Walls,walls just another Brick in the Wall. CHRISTIE,your fired. Lol. Giuliani,your FIRED. Putin….mahalo. And he’s only the PE! Can we start the worst PE POTUS in history thread or is it to early for that. As quoted by MITCH, “We will never work with this President”. Hey, don’t forget the PE got your wife a sweetheart head honcho job. And don’t you forget that.

  • Of course Trump and Putin will deny their involvement. What is disturbing is that many of us will turn s blind eye to such actions against our very democracy. In this day and age where the ends justify the means as in the case of how Trump conducts himself and how Putin himself runs his own country it is no surprise. Yes, people want change due to the rising health care cost and spend and tax policies but to accept the actions of a hostile country against the United States of America is simply unacceptable.

  • Of course Trump and Putin will deny their involvement. What is troubling is that many of us will turn a blind eye to such actions against our very democracy. In this day and age where the ends justify the means as in the case of how Trump conducts himself and how Putin himself runs his own country it is no surprise. Yes, people want change due to the rising health care cost and spend and tax policies but to accept the actions of a country that has shown a stand against the United States of America is simply unacceptable and downright unpatriotic.

  • Of course Trump and Putin will deny their involvement. What is troubling is that many of us will turn a blind eye to such actions against our very democracy. In this day and age where the ends justify the means as in the case of how Trump conducts himself and how Putin himself runs his own country it is no surprise. Yes, people want change due to the rising health care cost and spend and tax policies but to accept the actions of a country that has shown a stand against the United States of America is downright unpatriotic.

    • Directly from the article – “No proof was offered for any of the accusations”

      In other words, no proof means that the accusations are garbage until proven for a fact.

      It could have been an inside job for all we know and I mentioned that a week or two ago. Wikileaks has already stated that the Russians didn’t give them the hacked emails, and I’ll take Wikileaks word over our own bumbling administrations word any day of the week.

      • IRT latenightroach: I don’t agree or disagree with what you said but do you normally trust people who commit criminal acts such as hacking into private emails? Did you mean you trust them more compared to the administration? #MAGA

        • jusris –

          The question is this – Who actually did it?

          Until there’s proven facts instead of just accusations and assumptions, I cannot believe either side beyond a reasonable doubt. It’s not like our own admin hasn’t lied to us all before, so my level of trust is pretty slim to none.

          As for Wikileaks – They don’t do the hacking, they only release what’s given to them. With that said, you could say that Wikileaks tried to interfere with regards to the timing of releasing those hacked emails that exposed a lot of dirt.

        • The story as I read it was that he was not a loyal Trump supporter, just someone on the inside at DNC that was so disgusted with what he was seeing that he leaked the emails to Wikileaks, who then released them.

        • Hey Vector, where are you receiving your “Fake News”? There is no confirmation from the 17 intelligence agencies of the Hawaii born President Obama administration.

  • Once again, in a 3AM tweet, Trump falsely claimed that reports of Russian hacking didn’t come up until after the election. It is pathological behavior to tell lies even though you will immediately be exposed as a liar. Trump: Make Russia Great Again!

  • 1. Time to beef up your cyber security. Maybe a server in the basement is not such a good idea. 2. Forget how the emails got out. Let’s focus on the contents of the emails. I think that should be a bigger concern. You can always fix security with your tech, but you can’t fix unethical, unlawful(?), and immoral personalities.

        • IRT kuroiwaj: I may be wrong but did Clinton get convicted in this Court of Law that you cite? If not, it didn’t stop Trumpers from convicting Clinton of being those things…If Clinton has been convicted in a Court of Law then excuse my ignorance…#MAGA

        • IRT Jusris, in the Clinton breaking any laws, not pau yet. The FBI and Justice are still investigating the Clinton Foundation and others.

      • Again with the diversion. Even if I said yes I think Trump is immoral and so forth, it would be my opinion through what I see in the media. The point is what Clinton’s and Podesta’s emails contained proved that backdoor deals were happening all the time. Let’s focus on that.

  • If the White House knew of the hacking job why didn’t they stop it or informed the citizens of USA about it! Why bring it up now? Didn’t vote for Trump but what he has done these past few weeks seem to give me a sense of security! A degree of having everything in control and has the gumption to lead without kowtowing to any other leaders in this world! It’s better than playing politics behind the scenes!

  • The sad reality is: was there a hack from a foreign power with nefarious intent? Is the South China Seas being militarized with absolutely no reaction from anyone, despite what’s at stake? Do we have alt-right movements threatening the stability of the European Union; along with isolationist proclivities winning out over humanitarian considerations towards refugees? Do we have a gap between the rich and poor the likes of which have not been seen since the Weimar Republic in Germany and the financial collapse of 1929? Do we have a North Korea that is, in all probability, able to deliver nuclear warheads to parts of the US, which means us in Hawaii? The answer is all yes. It isn’t fake news. It isn’t blurring reality. If you aren’t living in One Ala Moana, or any of the myriad million dollar + condo units going up, you know the stark reality of an uneven economy, questionable ethics, and a disregard for the people exercised by both of our major parties.

  • This gets better every day. Barry Hussein and his party are desperate as they see their power evaporate right in front of them. Barry Hussein, the Clinton Crime Family and their lapdog media outlets suffered a humiliating defeat by “under educated white guys” and they are still in denial. Blaming the Russians is all they have and the more they push that narrative the more ridiculous they look. Time to face the facts: Trump will be sworn in, republicans control everything top to bottom, filibuster is no longer needed- thanks Harry Reid- the supreme court will be conservative for at least another generation, political correctness has lost much of it’s free speech limiting power, Trump is in the process of peeling off the black vote, it’s okay to say Merry Christmas again, military social engineering will come to an end, the culture of government dependency is on the way out, and America will be great again. I could go on but I think everyone gets it. Bye bye Barry. #MAGA

    • IRT CEI: We couldn’t say Merry Christmas??? When did that happen??? Fake News…I along with most everyone in Hawaii seem to have broken this LAW, if you are correct. #MAGA

      • Since when? Years ago! Where you been?

        As a former government employee, our Christmas parties were renamed “Holiday” parties in order to be politically correct. And the greeting changed from “Merry Christmas” to “Happy Holidays” as well. True story!

        PS –
        Merry Christmas!

        • Completely disagree with you…Happy Holidays was to include everyone who didn’t celebrateChtistmas, nobody said you couldn’t say Merry Christmas though, if you chose to not say Merry Christmas it was your fault…#MAGA

        • Thanksgiving, Christmas, New Years, Holiday Season, Hanukkah, and whatever else they want to celebrate.

  • It’s disappointing to see the President-elect dismiss what could be seen as an “act of war” if Russia did indeed hack into sensitive U.S. emails.

    Hey, braddah, get off that high horse and check that enormous ego at the door, and let’s pursue this to the hilt.

    I’m giving Trump a long rope, and really hopes he can #MAGA, but every day I wake up and the rope is slowly becoming a noose.

    Well, you get what you (vote) for.

    • IRT roughrider: Good comment, why wouldn’t Trump investigate the Russia hack accusation, its a win win situation for him. If he finds that it’s true, whoever did the hacking, he can act on it an show the FULL might of America on the perpetrator. If it proves false then he can unleash the full might of his Trumpers on Obama and Democrats and Republicans and ALL who doubted him, he will look even stronger to the people who support him. #MAGA

    • Well stated. I too am giving him a lot of rope. In a few days, the fun and games stop. He will be responsible for everything that happens. As people on this board continually deny news stories and reports, it will be interesting to see how thing unfold.
      To me it seems the PE is having a lot of fun acting as a president. We’ll see what he and his appointees can do for America and not just for their buddies in the financial sectors.

  • It was the Aliens (no not the illegals) ! Ridiculous you say? Just as ridiculous as the accusations contained in aforementioned article. With lack of evidence then said article would be deemed to be a “false news story”. Better if we embraced considered the Aliens were involved… 🙂

  • at stein’s request, michigan conducted a recount and uncovered massive voter fraud and vote tampering.

    detroit is just one example:

    95% of the precincts in detroit voted for clinton.
    60% of the precincts were disqualified from being recounted due to “irregularities.”
    37% of the precincts reported more voted ballots than registered voters in the precinct.
    one precinct’s ballot box was discovered to have only 50 voted ballots but reported 306 ballots in its poll book.

    such widespread systematic violations of voter laws could only be accomplished with government knowledge and support.

    i suggest that obama and clinton personally authorized the hacking of michigan’s presidential voting system.

  • FACTS:
    Crooked hiLIARy LOST fair & square. She can use her CANCELED unused FIREWORKS for many New Years to come.

    Obama can display his Greek Columns in his Pres Library along with his 3 books…or was that 2?

    P.E. Trump WON in a SHOCKING LANDSLIDE VICTORY!

    January 20, 2017 P.E.Trump & V.P.E. Pence #MAGA

  • Wait a second. Didn’t Barry’s Sec’y of State “reset” relations with the Russians? And wasn’t that Sec’y of State Waldo Clinton? And didn’t they screw up the message on the button? Didn’t the message translate to overload rather than reset? Looks like smart people frequently make stupid mistakes.

    • Your comment is awaiting moderation.

      Wait a second. Didn’t Barry’s Sec’y of State “reset” relations with the Russians? And wasn’t that Sec’y of State Waldo Clinton? And didn’t they screw up the message on the button? Didn’t the message translate to overload rather than reset? Looks like smart people frequently make s#u&p%d mistakes.

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