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Trump Calls Bounties On U.S. Soldiers “Hoax” As Russian Hysteria Spins Out Of Control

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Trump Calls Bounties On U.S. Soldiers "Hoax" As Russian Hysteria Spins Out Of Control

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On July 2nd, US House Speaker Nancy Pelosi and Senate Democratic leader Chuck Schumer said that US President Donald Trump was “soft” on Russian President Vladimir Putin and distracted by less important issues.

This relates to reports that Russia offered bounties to the Taliban in Afghanistan for killing US troops.

“Our armed forces would be better served if President Trump spent more time reading his daily briefing and less time planning military parades and defending relics of the Confederacy,” Pelosi and Schumer said in a joint statement.

Top intelligence officials, including CIA Director Gina Haspel and Director of National Intelligence John Ratcliffe, conducted the closed-door briefing for a group of lawmakers dubbed the “gang of eight” — Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell, House Speaker Nancy Pelosi and the top Republicans and Democrats on the two intelligence committees.

The White House has insisted that Trump wasn’t briefed on the assessments because they hadn’t been verified, even though it’s rare for intelligence to be confirmed without a shadow of doubt before it is presented to senior government decision-makers.

“The White House has done a con, saying that because all of the agencies of intelligence have not signed off on this, it wasn’t worthy of the president’s attention,” Pelosi said. “You know the death of our young people in Afghanistan or any place is worthy of the president’s attention.”

Administration officials have insisted they have taken intelligence seriously. National security adviser Robert O’Brien said that CIA and the Pentagon pursued the leads and briefed international allies.

US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo said the situation was handled “incredibly well” to ensure the safety of U.S. troops.

“We took this seriously, we handled it appropriately,” Pompeo said, without giving additional details.

Trump has called reports of the intelligence assessments a “hoax” and has so far declined to address whether the U.S. has or will respond to Russia.

A video is, however, circulating social media, purportedly made by Russians who simply admit that US President Donald Trump’s biggest ally is, in fact, Russian President Vladimir Putin.

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