For months, the Trump administration has been deliberating about what to do about a shocking intelligence report.
American intelligence officials have concluded that a Russian military intelligence unit secretly offered bounties to Taliban-linked militants for killing coalition forces in Afghanistan.
This included targeting American troops all while peace talks to end the long-running war were ongoing, according to reports.
The United States concluded that the Russian unit had covertly offered rewards for successful attacks last year.
The same Russian unit was linked to assassination attempts and other covert operations in Europe. They were intended to destabilize the West and take revenge on informants.
Islamist militants and conjoined criminal elements are believed to have collected some bounty money, according to the New York Times.
Twenty Americans were killed in combat in Afghanistan in 2019. However, it’s not clear which killings were under suspicion.
However, the biggest bombshell was that the intelligence finding was briefed to President Trump. Also, the White House’s National Security Council discussed the problem at an interagency meeting in late March.
As of this morning, #TraitorTrump was trending on Twitter.
Trump has famously adopted an accommodating stance toward Moscow, showing reverence for President Vladimir Putin.
Potential options were discussed starting with making a diplomatic complaint to Moscow and a demand that it stop. In addition, an escalating series of sanctions and other possible responses.
However, the White House has yet to authorize any step, according to reports.
This is the first time the Russian spy unit was known to have orchestrated attacks on Western troops.
This is perceived as yet another Russian strategy against the United States. It is a mix of destabilizing adversaries through cyberattacks, the spread of fake news and covert and deniable military operations.
The intelligence assessment is said to be based at least in part on interrogations of captured Afghan militants and criminals.