The election didn’t work out for Hillary Clinton, nor did a campaign for recounts, with some results showed Donald Trump gaining votes. Now, claims that the Kremlin hacked the U.S. election to hand the Oval Office to Trump are falling apart, too.
As one commenter to WND said, “What is next … blame Bigfoot, blame aliens, divine intervention, George Bush, global warming?”
“The bottom line is: Trump won!! Get over it!!”
Writer Matthew Vadum at Canada Free Press speculated, after the CIA declined to provide evidence of a Russian hack to Congress: “Could it be the CIA – which employs more than a few Trump haters – doesn’t actually have any evidence? If they have proof they should cough it up. But they refuse.
“Instead, CIA officials keep leaking to the media. These people can’t be trusted. The CIA has a long track record both for lying and breathtaking incompetence. This talk of a Russian conspiracy to hack U.S. computer networks to put Trump in the White House has always been difficult to believe.”
The fight to reverse the outcome chosen by voters on Nov. 8 has been intensifying as the Electoral College prepares to vote Monday, with celebrities producing ads to persuade electors to reject the will of voters, investigations of Russian influence and more.
It’s getting more complicated than a Robert Ludlum thriller novel.
For example, NBC reported Thursday that U.S. intelligence officials, who were not named, “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.”
“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,” NBC reported.
The network claimed its “high-level intelligence source” said Putin’s objectives were “multifaceted” and that “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] could not depend on the U.S. to be a credible global leader anymore.'”
“An ally of WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange has said the hack of the Democratic Party in the run up to the U.S. elections was not Russian but instead an ‘inside job,'” the paper said.
“Former British ambassador Craig Murray said he has met the person who handed over the emails and they WERE from the Democratic National committee,” the report said. “The emails were released by Mr. Assange’s site and caused damage to Hillary Clinton’s reputation with a number of shock revelations among tens of thousands of emails.”
But Murray told reporters: “I’ve met the person who leaked them, and they are certainly not Russian and it’s an insider. It’s a leak, not a hack; the two are different things.”
He continued: “As Julian Assange has made crystal clear, the leaks did not come from the Russians. As I have explained countless times, they are not hacks, they are insider leaks – there is a major difference between the two.”
The Inquisitr commented: “This claim flies in the face of the narrative dominating American media every since The Washington Post broke the story last Friday that the Central Intelligence Agency (CIA) had strong evidence to believe that Russian hackers were behind the DNC leaks that rocked Hillary Clinton’s Democratic campaign.”
But WND has reported the Office of the Director of National Intelligence has sided with the FBI, which said it couldn’t back the CIA’s conclusion that the Russians hacked the accounts of the DNC and its leaders.
In recent days, both the Washington Post and New York Times reported the CIA believes Russia was not just trying to meddle in America’s democratic process but was actively working in support of Trump. The Times report admitted there is no concrete evidence for the charge but states that intelligence officials believe there is a considerable amount of circumstantial evidence.
A former Reagan administration Pentagon official said Monday the claim is devoid of any publicly available evidence.
The CIA was not alleging that Trump or his campaign colluded with the alleged Russian plot or that Russia in any way impacted vote counting on Election Day.
But the rumors being discussed by the CIA have given fuel to Trump critics, including those in Congress who now want an investigation. Electors also are complaining they don’t have enough information.
Reuters reported officials inside the ODNI, who were not identified, said their office has not endorsed the CIA assessment because of a lack of conclusive evidence that Moscow intended to boost Trump.
The ODNI oversees the 17-agency-strong U.S. intelligence community.
Its conclusion “could give Trump fresh ammunition to dispute the CIA assessment, which he rejected as ‘ridiculous’ in weekend remarks,” Reuters reported.
“ODNI is not arguing that the [CIA] is wrong, only that they can’t prove intent,” an official told Reuters. “Of course they can’t, absent agents in on the decision-making in Moscow.”
The FBI earlier said its standards for evidence weren’t satisfied by the CIA’s assumptions and conclusions.
President Obama has ordered intelligence agencies to report to him what they know about such attacks.
The exact benefit to Russia to having Trump in the White House has not yet been explained, either.
In fact, one of the most influential and highly quoted Russian intellectuals, professor Valery Solovei, says Russian officials will have to face an abrupt new reality on Jan. 20 when Trump is inaugurated.
In a report in Joseph Farah’s G2 Bulletin, he said: “Trump is not Obama. In the foreign policy domain, the Obama administration was the weakest postwar American administration. Trump cannot allow himself such weakness. Therefore, though the situation opens some new possibilities before us, it carries much larger risks.
“The new American administration will react from a position of strength, and we can never win in this competition. The Soviet Union had lost it, and Russia is much weaker than the Soviet Union. Our (Russia vs. U.S.) potentials are grossly disproportionate, have no illusions about it.”
Former Reagan official Frank Gaffney, president of the Center for Security Policy, called the CIA’s evidence hearsay.
“What the public knows is very limited. It really comes down to some press accounts based on unnamed sources in the CIA, people talking about briefings they had from CIA or FBI or others,” Gaffney said.
Listen to the WND/Radio America interview with Frank Gaffney:
In a further development reported Thursday by Fox News, Rep. Peter King, R-N.Y., “slammed the intelligence community … for forcing the cancellation of a planned House Intelligence Committee briefing on alleged Russian interference in the U.S. election.”
“All we’ve heard from the intelligence community over the last several months is that they could not say that there was any attempt to undermine Hillary Clinton [or] to help Donald Trump” King said. “The consensus was that there was an attempt by the Russians to put a cloud over the election, to create disunity. Well, that’s what’s happening right now, but it’s the intelligence community that’s doing it.”
He made the comments, Fox News said, shortly after the committee abruptly canceled the scheduled briefing, based on the refusal by the CIA to “provide a briefer.”
“Somebody has the time to leak it to the Washington Post and the New York Times, but they don’t have time to come to Congress,” King said. “It’s their job to come. They don’t have any choice. They have to come in, especially when they have created this.”
He warned of rot inside the system.
“This violates all protocols and it’s almost as if people in the intelligence community are carrying out a disinformation campaign against the president-elect of the United States. It’s absolutely disgraceful and if they’re not doing it, then it must be someone in the House or the Senate who’s leaking false information and there should be a full investigation of this.”
He continued: “Ninety-nine percent of the people in the CIA are great. There’s somebody here, though, that’s behind something that’s totally irresponsible.”
AP reported the Kremlin was denying claims Putin directed the hacked data.
“Asked about the report, Putin spokesman Dmitry Peskov on Thursday dismissed it as ‘laughable nonsense,'” AP said.
But there were reports of other channels for the leaks, too.
The Gateway Pundit blog quoted author Ed Klein saying “the rumors of Russian interference in the U.S. election came from John Brennan who is receiving his marching orders from Obama.”
Said Klein, “In telephone conversations with Donald Trump, FBI Director James Comey assured the president-elect there was no credible evidence that Russia influenced the outcome of the recent U.S. presidential election by hacking the Democratic National Committee and the emails of John Podesta, the chairman of Hillary Clinton’s presidential campaign.”
Klein, author of “Guilty as Sin,” continued, “The only member of the U.S. intelligence community who was ready to assert that the Russians sanctioned the hacking was John Brennan, the director of the CIA, according to sources who were briefed on Comey’s conversations with Trump.”
He continued, “In Comey’s view, the leaks to the New York Times and the Washington Post alleging that the Russians tried – and perhaps even succeeded – in tilting the election to Trump were a Democratic Party effort to delegitimize Trump’s victory.”