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Trump: Election Not Affected by Russian Hacks

While US intelligence agencies claim Putin “ordered” the campaign to help Trump, the president-elect slams Democratic National Committee with “gross negligence” over cyber security
Russian President Vladimir Putin Russian President Vladimir Putin
After being briefed on the intelligence report, Trump said hacking by foreign powers did not affect the final outcome of the November presidential election

The negligence of the Democratic National Committee was the reason for the hacking of email accounts of the party’s members, US president-elect, Donald Trump, said on Saturday.

In December, media reported that the US Central Intelligence Agency suspects that Russia had interfered in the course of US presidential election, hacking mail servers of US citizens and organizations, including the DNC, Sputnik reported.

The agency claimed that Moscow had targeted the presidential campaign of the Democratic Party’s Hillary Clinton, because it wanted Trump to win. At the same time, the FBI has reportedly reached opposite conclusions from the same raw intelligence.

  The Report in Detail

“We assess Russian President Vladimir Putin ordered an influence campaign in 2016 aimed at the US presidential election,” the report said. “We further assess Putin and the Russian government developed a clear preference for president-elect Trump. We have high confidence in these judgments.”

The report said the US intelligence agencies believe Russian military intelligence, the GRU, used intermediaries such as WikiLeaks, DCLeaks.com and the Guccifer 2.0 “persona” to release emails that it had acquired from the Democratic National Committee and top Democrats as part of the effort.

The release of the emails led to embarrassing media coverage for Clinton and triggered the resignation of DNC’s chief.

WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange has said he did not receive emails stolen from the DNC and top Clinton aide John Podesta from “a state party”.

Russian actors were not found to have targeted US systems that are involved in tallying votes, the report said.

While the report found Russia had conducted cyber attacks on both the Democratic and the Republican parties, it made clear that the primary aims were to harm Clinton whether or not she won the election and evolved over time.

  “Hacks Had No Effect” on Vote    

The US president-elect has said that hacking by foreign powers did not affect the final outcome of the November presidential election, after being briefed on the intelligence report.

“While Russia, China, other countries, outside groups and people are consistently trying to break through the cyber infrastructure of our governmental institutions, businesses and organizations including the Democrat National Committee, there was absolutely no effect on the outcome of the election,” Trump said in a statement.

In a separate post on social media late on Friday, Trump said, “Gross negligence by the Democratic National Committee allowed hacking to take place. The Republican National Committee had strong defense!”

  “We Are on the Same Team”

After the briefing, Vice president-elect, Mike Pence, addressed reporters outside Trump Tower, in New York, about the report, vowing that the government would take an “aggressive action” to combat cyber attacks, “and protect the security of the American people from this type of intrusion in the future”.

US President Barack Obama has reminded his successor that “we’re on the same team”, after the release of the report.

“One of the things I am concerned about is the degree to which we’ve seen a lot of commentary lately where there are Republicans or pundits or cable commentators who seem to have more confidence in (Russian president) Vladimir Putin than fellow Americans because those fellow Americans are Democrats. That cannot be,” Obama said in an interview with ABC News.

“We have to remind ourselves we’re on the same team. Vladimir Putin’s not on our team,” Obama added in the interview, which is to be broadcast in full on Sunday.

  Clinton Discredited Herself

The main goal of the whole “Russian hacking” US election narrative is a propaganda stunt aimed at discrediting Trump by claiming that Russia’s Vladimir Putin personally intervened to discredit Hillary Clinton, a retired CIA analyst has told Russia Today.

“It’s designed to smear Trump. Because even the language that developed the notion that Vladimir Putin took it upon himself and instructed the intelligence organs in Russia to go out and discredit Hillary Clinton. Hillary Clinton didn’t need any help being discredited, she was quite effective at it herself,” Larry Johnson said.

“It was not Vladimir Putin that put the email server in her bathroom,” Johnson added.

“It was not Vladimir Putin who told Hillary Clinton to use a private email account and conduct US-government business over that account and to share classified information.”

The report lacks any factual evidence, because the intelligence services apparently don’t have any, Larry Johnson believes.

“I don’t think they’re hiding anything because they don’t have anything. These are ‘or and how’ intelligence estimates as opposed to an intelligence analysis based on fact. There’s no fact underlying this. There are analytical assumptions,” Johnson said.

“You can tell that because whenever they use the language like ‘we assess that’ or ‘we believe that’ or ‘it’s likely that’ that means they don’t know, because if you knew, you could say … in public ‘according to multiple sources we know that.’ You state facts,” he explained.

When the intelligence community raises such assumptions, it should be really confident and unanimous about them. It was, however, only somewhat coordinated within three of the agencies, namely FBI, CIA and NSA, according to Johnson.

“It was only CIA and FBI that ‘strongly agree’ but the NSA, who’s the only one in that group that would actually have the physical evidence of the hacking, if that existed … took a middle of the road position,” Johnson told RT.

 

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