Biden slams Trump over report Russia provided bounties for Afghan militants to kill U.S. troopers

Joe Biden has accused Donald Trump of betraying his responsibility as president, after a report claimed the White Home knew for months Russian intelligence provided Afghan militants bounties to kill U.S. troopers however didn’t punish Moscow. 

“His complete presidency has been a present to Putin, however that is past the pale,” Biden mentioned throughout a digital city corridor Saturday. “It is betrayal of essentially the most sacred responsibility we bear as a nation to guard and equip our troops after we ship them into hurt’s means. It is a betrayal of each single American household with a cherished one serving in Afghanistan or wherever abroad.”  

The New York Occasions reported Friday that the U.S. decided months in the past a Russian navy intelligence unit provided Taliban-linked militants bounties to kill U.S. troopers in Afghanistan. 

Trump was briefed on the intelligence and the White Home Nationwide Safety Council mentioned the findings at a gathering in late March, in keeping with the Occasions, which cited officers briefed on the matter. Officers developed choices from a diplomatic criticism to sanctions, however the White Home has not but approved a response, the Occasions reported, citing the officers. 

The Wall Road Journal additionally reported Saturday {that a} Russian spy unit paid militants in Afghanistan to assault U.S. troops, citing individuals aware of labeled American intelligence. The evaluation was delivered to the White Home earlier this spring, an individual aware of the intel informed the Journal. 

The White Home on Saturday denied that Trump and Vice President Mike Pence had been briefed on the matter, however didn’t dispute the validity of the intelligence as described within the New York Occasions’ report. 

“America receives 1000’s of intelligence studies a day and they’re topic to strict scrutiny,” White Home press secretary Kayleigh McEnany mentioned. “Whereas the White Home doesn’t routinely touch upon alleged intelligence or inside deliberations, the CIA Director, Nationwide Safety Advisor, and the Chief of Employees can all affirm that neither the president nor the vice chairman had been briefed on the alleged Russian bounty intelligence.”

“This doesn’t communicate to the advantage of the alleged intelligence however to the inaccuracy of the New York Occasions story erroneously suggesting that President Trump was briefed on this matter,” she added. 

Trump mentioned on Twitter Sunday that he, Pence and White Home Chief of Employees Mark Meadows weren’t briefed on what he known as “the so-called assaults on our troops in Afghanistan by Russians.” 

The Trump administration reached a take care of the Taliban in February to scale back the U.S. troop presence and established a cease-fire, with the objective of fully withdrawing from Afghanistan in 14 months.

Biden, the previous vice chairman and presumptive Democratic presidential nominee, slammed Trump for inviting Russia to hitch a summit assembly of seven world powers, referred to as the G-7, in Washington this September after allegedly being briefed on the plot to kill U.S. troopers. Russia was kicked out of the group in 2014 after annexing Crimea from Ukraine. 

“President Trump, the commander in chief of American troops serving in a harmful theater of battle, has identified about this for months in keeping with the Occasions and accomplished worse than nothing,” Biden mentioned.

“Not solely has he did not sanction or impose any form of penalties on Russia for this egregious violation of worldwide legislation, Donald Trump has continued his embarrassing marketing campaign of deference and debasing himself earlier than Vladimir Putin,” Biden continued. “He has had this info in keeping with the Occasions and but he provided to host Putin in america and sought to ask Russia to rejoin the G7.”

The highest Republican on the Home International Affairs Committee, Rep. Michael McCaul, mentioned he instantly reached out to the Trump administration after studying the New York Occasions’ report and “will likely be speaking with them within the very close to future.” 

“If correct, the administration should take swift and critical motion to carry the Putin regime accountable,” McCaul mentioned. The Texas congressman mentioned the report deepens his considerations in regards to the Russian authorities’s “malicious conduct globally.”

“From invading Ukraine, propping up dictators world wide and interfering in U.S. and European elections, the Putin regime has proven again and again it can’t be trusted and isn’t our good friend,” McCaul mentioned. 

Biden mentioned he took the report personally as the daddy of a soldier who served in a battle zone. His son Beau, who died of mind most cancers in 2015, deployed to Iraq in 2008 with the Military Nationwide Guard. 

“However I do not simply take into consideration this as a candidate for president. I take into consideration this as a dad, a father who despatched his son to serve in hurt’s means for a yr within the Center East and in Iraq, and I am disgusted on behalf of these households whose family members are serving right now,” Biden mentioned. 

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