Trump rebukes finding that Russia interfered in U.S. election

Hawaii Intelligence Digest, 05 January 2017, 17:25 hrs, UTC, Post #74.


Accessed on 05 January 2017, 17:25 hrs, UTC.

Reporters:  Ken Bredemeir and Jeff Seldin (Voice of America).

Please click link to read the full story.


There seems to be disagreement on just how much cyber warfare teams in the Russian Federation contributed to the victory of President-elect Donald Trump.

While Mr. Trump believes the charges of Russian meddling in the recent general election are overblown and devoid of definite proof, reports from the nation’s intelligence community are firm in pointing an accusing finger at Russia.

Mr. Trump contends that much of the reported hacking of emails from the Democratic National Committee was caused by poor security measures used by John Podesta, the chairman of the failed presidential campaign of Hillary Clinton.  Trump says the DNC didn’t have the “hacking defense” that the Republican National Committee had.

Despite the heavy criticism leveled at the Democratic National Committee by Mr. Trump, VOA reporters Ken Bredemeir and Jeff Seldin offer counterpoint to Mr. Trump’s claims:

“Trump has cast doubt on the conclusions and suggested his briefing from U.S. intelligence agencies had been delayed because “more time [is] needed to build a case. Very strange!”

Central Intelligence Agency chief John Brennan told the Public Broadcasting Service, “I would suggest to individuals that have not yet seen the report, who have not yet been briefed on it, that they wait and see what it is that the intelligence community is putting forward before they make those judgments.”

One U.S. official told VOA on the condition of anonymity, given the sensitivity about the president-elect’s intelligence briefings, “There was no delay” in briefing him.

“He does receive routine intelligence briefings,” the official added, indicating Trump was briefed Tuesday though there might have been a “disconnect” regarding Trump’s expectations for the briefing as opposed to the information.”


Below the smokescreen of the public debate, one thing is clear:  Specially trained cyber warfare teams in both Russia and China have been penetrating the economic, government, and military infrastructure for years. That some of these attempts were successful isn’t surprising.  In response to these cyber attacks, the United States has established a Cyber Command to identify and hopefully mitigate some of the damage done after years of foreign intelligence exploitation. As usual, we have come late to the table–which has served to embarrass both political parties.  All intelligence services in this country can do is inform the national leadership of trends and hope that the White House and Congress respond in a positive way.

Dumping the blame on the intelligence community is incredibly short-sighted and counterproductive.  The Russian Federation and China don’t seem to have this problem.

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Opinions expressed in this blog are mine unless otherwise stated.

Thanks for joining us today!

Russell Roberts

Hawaii Intelligence Digest

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