FBI is saying evidence isn’t there. And this isn’t about the vote itself, it’s about the DNC hack. Which had already been claimed, before the election, so we factored it or didn’t in our votes already. So what Democratic attempt is actually giving Russia what they want- a vehicle by which to attack our elections.
Via Red State:
I touched on this in a post yesterday, but today the Washington Post has a story titled FBI and CIA give differing accounts to lawmakers on Russia’s motives in 2016 hacks.
In a secure meeting room under the Capitol last week, lawmakers held in their hands a classified letter written by colleagues in the Senate summing up a secret, new CIA assessment of Russia’s role in the 2016 presidential election.
Sitting before the House Intelligence Committee was a senior FBI counterintelligence official. The question the Republicans and Democrats in attendance wanted answered was whether the bureau concurred with the conclusions the CIA had just shared with senators that Russia “quite” clearly intended to help Republican Donald Trump defeat Democrat Hillary Clinton and clinch the White House.
For the Democrats in the room, the FBI’s response was frustrating — even shocking.
During a similar Senate Intelligence Committee briefing held the previous week, the CIA’s statements, as reflected in the letter the lawmakers now held in their hands, were “direct and bald and unqualified” about Russia’s intentions to help Trump, according to one of the officials who attended the House briefing.
The FBI official’s remarks to the lawmakers on the House Intelligence Committee were, in comparison, “fuzzy” and “ambiguous,” suggesting to those in the room that the bureau and the agency weren’t on the same page, the official said.
According to the story, the CIA thinks the FBI just isn’t ballsy enough:
The divergent messages from the CIA and the FBI put a spotlight on the difficulty faced by intelligence and law enforcement officials as they try to draw conclusions about the Kremlin’s motives for hacking Democratic Party emails during the 2016 race. Officials are frequently looking at information that is fragmentary. They also face issues assessing the intentions of a country expert at conducting sophisticated “influence” operations that made it hard — if not impossible — to conclusively detect the Kremlin’s elusive fingerprints.
The competing messages, according to officials in attendance, also reflect cultural differences between the FBI and the CIA. The bureau, true to its law enforcement roots, wants facts and tangible evidence to prove something beyond all reasonable doubt. The CIA is more comfortable drawing inferences from behavior.
“The FBI briefers think in terms of criminal standards — can we prove this in court,” one of the officials said. “The CIA briefers weigh the preponderance of intelligence and then make judgment calls to help policymakers make informed decisions. High confidence for them means ‘we’re pretty damn sure.’ It doesn’t mean they can prove it in court.”
Let’s unpack this for a just a second. According to everyone involved there is no actual evidence of direct Kremlin involvement in the hacks or that the hacks had the specific goal of helping Trump. This is not disputing that it COULD be true, only to note that both sides say that there is no evidence. The FBI limits its comments to what it knows. The CIA, however, goes into a flight of fancy that seems to have exactly one objective: discrediting the results of the 2016 election and creating a myth that Trump as elected by Russian influence.