US Officials: Putin Was Directly Involved In Hacking

NBC News reports:

U.S. intelligence officials now believe with “a high level of confidence” that Russian President Vladimir Putin became personally involved in the covert Russian campaign to interfere in the U.S. presidential election, senior U.S. intelligence officials told NBC News.

Two senior officials with direct access to the information say new intelligence shows that Putin personally directed how hacked material from Democrats was leaked and otherwise used. The intelligence came from diplomatic sources and spies working for U.S. allies, the officials said.

Putin’s objectives were multifaceted, a high-level intelligence source told NBC News. What began as a “vendetta” against Hillary Clinton morphed into an effort to show corruption in American politics and to “split off key American allies by creating the image that [other countries] couldn’t depend on the U.S. to be a credible global leader anymore,” the official said.

Ultimately, the CIA has assessed, the Russian government wanted to elect Donald Trump. The FBI and other agencies don’t fully endorse that view, but few officials would dispute that the Russian operation was intended to harm Clinton’s candidacy by leaking embarrassing emails about Democrats.

The latest intelligence said to show Putin’s involvement goes much further than the information the U.S. was relying on in October, when all 17 intelligence agencies signed onto a statement attributing the Democratic National Committee hack to Russia.

  • MBear

    My…my…Scraps is a boy dog

  • bmoore4026

    And nothing will be done. The Red Skull is taking over the world.

    • kevin vincent

      Think about it this way the more stuff comes out the less legitimate Trump’a presidency is thus weakening his power kinda hard to rule when you are seen as completely illegitimate by the populace

      • Oikos

        Didn’t stop dumbya. Republicans don’t care about legitimacy only power.

        • kevin vincent

          Bush at least didn’t have foreign power and was regularly brutalized by the public. The fact that Trump was basically elected with the help of a foreign power on top of his historic vote loss is disastrous for his admin

          Bush was unpopular but he was legitimately elected like it or not Trump own is completely illegitimate

          • Oikos

            Bush was not legitimately elected either. Had the FL recount proceeded he would have lost. He was installed by the SCOTUS.

          • MBear

            That was the kinder, gentler corruption. Now they can just be blatant about it because everyone just rolled over and took it in the ass on that one.

          • Neal Broverman

            You think Trump will rule like the illegitimate prez he is? Please, he doesn’t give a shit. It will probably just embolden him to be even more awful. I mean, the Russian news broke Friday and he nominated Russian play-thing Rex Tiller for Sec of State a few days later. I wonder if the Dems are having high-level meetings about the EC and if that fails, what next. More likely, they’re probably just sending each other cat videos and catching up on ‘Westworld.’ I imagine Hillary is probably like, well, I did what I could. I don’t blame her (yeah, I guess I’m a fanboy) but where the hell is Schumer, Pelosi, Barack?

      • BobSF_94117

        There is no evidence that the GOP in the House or Senate cares much about HOW they came to control two branches of govt. With the possible exception of McCain, the “concern” they’ve expressed appears mostly to make sure any investigation doesn’t take place until well after the inauguration. Way, way after, if at all.

        • kevin vincent

          They can’t ignore the public for long though without causing an internal crisis

          • BobSF_94117

            They can and do ignore a majority of the population on a pretty regular basis…

      • MBear

        #NotMyPresident becomes #NotYourPresidentEither

        Well this is getting crazier

      • HoneyBoySmith

        Kevin, if Americans were smart enough to see him as illegitimate because he’s a Russian puppet, Trump wouldn’t have won a single state.

        Nothing will come of this discovery. Republicans, who in a little more than a month will control all branches of government, will make sure of that.

        • zhera

          At what point can the sitting President say ‘This election was fraudulent and manipulated. We shall have a new election and the UN (or some other international entity) will oversee it being done properly.’

          This is what SHOULD happen. So why isn’t it?

    • Anastasia Beaverhousen

      Where is Joe McCarthy when you need him?

      • bmoore4026

        Sucking The Devil’s dick, I hope.

        • TheManicMechanic

          Why wish something so awful on poor Satan?

  • Michael R

    Putin ties directly to Trump , Comey and Mitch McConnell etc etc etc .
    We need evidence of the Trump connection to keep him out of the White House .
    ( I don’t , keep him out anyway based on his behavior )
    Filthy .

  • BobSF_94117

    Disrupt? How about manipulate?

  • Anastasia Beaverhousen

    Where are all those republicans screaming, “Putingazi?”

      • DaveMiller135

        I hadn’t pictured shirtless, but I was definitely picturing Putin, feverishly typing away in the basement of the Kremlin.

    • dr morbius
      • adam tanner

        This.. so much this. More fake news without any sources on the record.. but as long as it jives with what you want to believe…

        • Gerry Fisher

          This report lines up with reports that had more sources. Until we get more on-the-record sources, we won’t know how true it is, but we’re getting there.

          Getting at the truth is a process; it’s not instantaneous. You do a huge disservice by calling this mid-process report “fake news.” It’s more false equivalency bullshit.

  • HoneyBoySmith

    Trump is a real life Manchurian Siberian Candidate.

    • Acronym Jim

      Dumber than a frozen peat bog.

      • Jerry

        Dumber than an Irkutsk sled track.

  • Gustav2

    Nuh-uh! That’s not what Comey says!*

    *so the trolls don’t have to…

  • TrollopeReader

    kelleyann is on joe …i’ll listen, but certainly not *watch* ….way too early on what looks to be a chilly morn’ ….

    • Gustav2

      Hey! That’s Ms Goebbels to you!

      • TrollopeReader

        harumpf!

  • MBear

    Okay that image of Putin sitting with Secretary Clinton…? Looks like Putin skips leg day.

  • abqdan

    All of which is interesting from an historical perspective. Let’s assume Congress as a whole accepted this report. What then? There is no constitutional mechanism for voiding an election. It’s unlikely that Trump and Pence would willingly step down, and unless their involvement could be shown, this is not grounds for impeachment. So basically, the Russians win. We’re stuck with Trump, even if we didn’t actually elect him, or if the Russians elected him by hacking or other means.

    • Todd20036

      Except Trump encouraged this and welcomed this.
      He knew

    • safari

      We are stuck with Trump. This news, though, will follow him around. Hopefully forever. It further chips away at his credibility and reduces his power.

  • OdieDenCO

    One wonders, when McConnell said 8 months ago, “let the people decide ” , did he know about the hacking going on then?

    What did McConnell know and when did he know it?

    • Silver Badger

      Or perhaps he meant the Russian people.

      • OdieDenCO

        the Russian people have no voice. tsar putin the puny speaks for them.

        • Silver Badger

          It appears that tsar putin speaks for the American people too.

    • Skeptical_Inquirer

      Yeah, that asshole needs to be investigated too. I want this asshole to go down as the treasonous majority leader cheaply bribed with a trinket job for his wifey.

    • Ninja0980

      It wouldn’t have mattered.
      Party over country for Republicans, always.

      • Stephen Elliot Phillips

        Party over family too

  • Should we quickly re-do the election? Use only paper ballots, no machine voting, no allowing any political ads, just alert the populace that due to hacking we need a do-over. Oh, and offer a steep tax rebate to those who vote.

    • TexasBoy

      And outlaw those annoying robo-calls permanently.

  • CanuckDon

    Just imagine how much bigger this would be if the tables were turned and they had helped Hillary become President.

    • cleos_mom

      The teevee networks would even cancel coverage of football games for the Scandal of the Millennium.

      • CanuckDon

        Sadly, we all can envision that that would definitely be the case.

      • Bj Lincoln

        I would hope.

        • cleos_mom

          Let’s just not say what.

  • stuckinthewoods

    VA Representative to US House Don Beyer is calling for a delay of the Electoral College vote until the electors are briefed on the intelligence about foreign interference.
    https://www.washingtonpost.com/local/virginia-politics/virginia-congressman-calls-for-delay-in-electoral-college-vote/2016/12/14/98022426-c21b-11e6-8422-eac61c0ef74d_story.html?utm_term=.a21f2feff94d

    • Skeptical_Inquirer

      I think that there needs to be a huge stink if the GOPers block briefing the electors. And if I was an elector, I’d consider any refusal to give me the info a green light to go along with overturning Trump.

  • rednekokie

    If there is any doubt in anyone’s mind about this, then they have been far far away from reality for much too long.

  • TexasBoy

    If Putin was in on it, and Trump admired him as a leader, does anyone really think Trump the deal maker wasn’t in on it, too?

  • ZRAinSWVA

    And the only word about this on Faux News? “Elector push for Russia briefing heats up after Podesta fans flames” Filter, scrub, whitewash, repeat…

  • Silver Badger

    I find the lack of outrage from the Republicans to be somewhat bemusing. I wonder if the electoral college remembers “The Red Rise of Communism” Or shoe pounding Kruschev telling the world “we will bury you”? How about “duck and cover”?

    • Skeptical_Inquirer

      They remind me of the English lords who loved Hitler before WW2. Of course, Hitler then proceeded to devastate London and other cities.

  • geoffalnutt

    Great supersonic “duh” on a stick. Trump is completely, utterly illegitimate. Next.

  • cleos_mom

    Won’t be included in the perky news we’re hearing nightly about il Douche’s latest pronouncements and national public masturbation victory tour. We’ll likely be hearing the same about the approach of the comet or asteroid mentioned in another JMG post.

    • kanehau

      There *is* an asteroid headed our way… and it is colored orange. (Or perhaps it’s a hemorrhoid.)

      • cleos_mom

        Maybe we should all invest in witch hazel!

  • danolgb

    The hacking was only half of it. The rest of the story was how Russian-backed media would spin what was in the emails with the aim of getting people to sit out of the election. And Russia is still at it…
    http://ww2.kqed.org/news/2016/12/13/from-his-home-in-russia-calexit-leader-plots-california-secession/

  • Skeptical_Inquirer

    What I loathe is that the people who voted for this asshole . . . the media is still trying to whip up pity for them instead of saying “Fucking dumbasses, you voted in the Siberian candidate because you had a fit because people say ‘Happy Holidays,’ and your supervisor happens to be browner than you!”

    • danolgb
      • Skeptical_Inquirer

        If they love Putin, they should move to Russia and enjoy what it’s like to be in a very white dictatorship with no tolerance for stepping out of line or LGBT. I especially urge the Log Cabin Republicans to be shipped there. I’m sure they’ll love it.

        • Bj Lincoln

          Oh Please Please PLEASE! Send those boot lickers!

          • paganguy

            Calling them boot lickers is putting it very nicely, but is an insult to boot lickers.

          • cleos_mom

            They’re welcome to lick the boots I wear in our chicken yard.

  • greenmanTN

    Well good for you Pooty-Poot (GW Bush’s nickname for him) because you seem to have achieved your goal.

    • Skeptical_Inquirer

      God, I loathe stupid nicknames. I still remember Karl Rove’s name is Turd blossom.

      • greenmanTN

        Well you have to admit that Karl Rove really is a Turd Blossom.

  • Martin

    After Trump won, Russians close to Putin were openly cheering. “Today I
    want to ride around Moscow with an American flag in the window, if I can
    find a flag,” tweeted Margarita Simonyan,
    editor in chief of the Kremlin’s propaganda organ, RT. And Deputy
    Foreign Minister Sergei Ryabkov admitted that the Kremlin had maintained
    contacts with Trump during the campaign: “Obviously we know most of the people from his entourage.”

    http://www.usatoday.com/story/opinion/2016/11/18/trump-putin-russia-nato-security-max-boot/94026988/

  • kladinvt

    In other words, the 2016 election was illegitimate. So why doesn’t anyone in either party stand up against this rigged outcome?

  • Bj Lincoln

    Why has Drumpf not been disqualified and sent packing! He in NOT FIT TO RULE and the Russians helped him get there! Screw the electoral college at this point! The entire election was a sham and the whole world knows it! NO ONE wants Drumpf as leader of the free world except the morons who voted for him! Remove him at once!

    • MBear

      Not fit to rule? Seems like the bigger problem is Americans not fit to vote

      • William

        Yes to both.

      • cleos_mom

        There might be a slight problem with Americans fit to vote who live in states where DMVs closed from one state line to another — after said state passed a voter ID law.

        Of course, they weren’t white. There’s that.

      • Neal Broverman

        Look at Britain and (likely, France). Lots of dumb in this world, sadly.

  • bambinoitaliano

    So the proof is in the putin, what is the US going to do about it? Declare war against Russia? Having SCOTUS void the election result? Suspend the inauguration and keep Obama admin on until further notice?

  • sadoldguy

    As long as these sources remain anonymous they will be discounted as liberal lies or media lies.
    Trump fans will never believe it, but a bunch of America might pay attention if it was more then a “he said – she said” thing.

  • William

    No shit Shirley.

  • joe ho

    And cable news played along, reveling in the latest illegal hacked material as if it were delicious Hollywood gossip. They were in fact acting like Russian intermediary lackeys. Disgusting.

    I remember Jake Tapper loving the Podesta emails being mean to Bernie. I wonder now whether Tapper, a devout Jew and father of two young children, has any regrets at his own irresponsible behavior now that new levels of antisemitism are being unleashed and climate change efforts will be fatally crippled.

    Turn off cable news entirely. Don’t feed the beast.

  • boatboy_srq

    Quelle surprise.

  • olandp

    An attempt to discredit the US with it’s allies making them believe the US will not support them and come to their aid. Mark that one “DONE”. Don the Con has said he won’t support NATO, clearing the way for Vlad to take over the world, and we just gave it to him.

  • Lawerence Collins

    It’s one thing to believe something. It’s another to be able to prove it! None of this changes the facts that came out about her.

    • olandp

      What “facts”?

      Nothing was ever even rumored that is equal to Don the Con’s treason.

      • Lawerence Collins

        Where do you get your news from?
        She’s marginally better in her social issues. She’d keep her secrets hid better. She’d pretend she made some great deal. She’s for the TPP, cutting Medicare, Medicaid and Social Security. Bill had a plan to do it first.
        Wake Up!

        • olandp

          I get my news from a place where they don’t end the sentence with a preposition.

          • Lawerence Collins

            That must be the problem.

    • ryan charisma

      FU – paid Russian troll

      • Lawerence Collins

        😬😳🤔🤗😏😝😜😜😳
        Wake Up!

    • BillTheCat45

      Cry some more, useful moron.

      • Lawerence Collins

        I’m not crying.
        Go look in the mirror 🤔😒😜

        • BillTheCat45

          Sorry, too busy taking care of your Mom kiddo.

          • Lawerence Collins

            You take care of the dead?!? So you’re a cemetery groundskeeper. Still no reason to be so ill informed.

          • BillTheCat45

            Sssssswing and a miss. Enjoy your 4 years wrecking the country Junior, we’ll be here to take over after.

          • Lawerence Collins

            I’m 53.

          • BillTheCat45

            So am I, Junior. Unfortunately, your brain got left back in elementary school.

          • Lawerence Collins

            You’ve no argument so…
            you post a pathetic personal attack.
            Sadly my cognitive skill skills are very intact.

    • Jean-Marc in Canada

      Oh look, BP’s other butt buddy is gracing us with its presence, how utterly banal. There, I’ve fed the drooling troll, time to move on to serious people with legitimate and valid comments to make.

  • justmeeeee

    So they said…and what they said they’re not saying, and who they are they’re not saying, but they said….now that’s NEWS!