BREAKING NEWS: Russia paid the Taliban BOUNTIES for killing American troops in Afghanistan in plot orchestrated by secret unit which poisoned a defector spy – and White House has known for MONTHS
U.S. intelligence concluded a Russian unit paid bounties to Taliban elements for killings of U.S. troops
Would add up to a major escalation for Moscow
Trump administration took no apparent action in response
Donald Trump was briefed on the activity, the New York Times reports
The president has over and over called for having good relations with Moscow
In another brazen attack on the U.S., a Russian military intelligence unit has secretly paid bounties to Taliban-linked fighters to kill U.S. and coalition forces in Afghanistan, according to a bombshell New York Times report.
The report represents a lethal escalation in Moscow’s repeated efforts to undermine U.S. policy, and came as the administration was seeking to find ways to extract itself from the decades-long war by making peace with the Taliban.
President Donald Trump was briefed on the activity, the New York Times reported Friday – but the U.S. took no evident action.
President Donald Trump delivers remarks to U.S. troops, with Afghanistan President Ashraf Ghani standing behind him, during an unannounced trip to Bagram Air Base, Afghanistan, November 28, 2019. A Russian military unit paid Taliban fighters bounties to kill American forces, based on the New York Times
There were times when the bounties were in fact paid, based on the paper, although it failed to identify specific U.S. troops stationed in Afghanistan were killed as a result of the Russian bounty payments, based on the paper.
It was discussed at the White House national security council. Twenty Americans were killed last year in the bloody Afghan war, which began in 2001.
According to the paper, U.S. policy members developed a ‘menu’ of options, from the diplomatic slap to further increases in U.S. sanctions or other unnamed responses. But officials said the White House has taken no response to date.
The group paying the money was called a Russian military intelligence unit, which the paper failed to identify by name.
Trump received substantial criticism during the 2016 campaign for his repeated calls to improve relations with Moscow. Then after that he took office, he came under fire for his closed-door meeting with Russian President Vladimir Putin with only translators present, and for publicly accepting Putin’s denial of interference in the elections.
Former Trump national security advisor Mike Flynn pleaded guilty to lying to the FBI about his Russia contacts after urging the Russian ambassador to not retaliate against U.S. sanctions imposed during the Obama administration for election interference.
Flynn then sought to reverse his guilty plea.
The revelation follows serious allegations in a brand new book by former National Security Advisor John Bolton, who claims Trump asked Chinese President Xi Jinping to help his reelection by buying U.S. farm products.
Trump weathered a House Democratic impeachment effort after the release of his call to the president of Ukraine urging investigations of rival Joe Biden and his son, Hunter. Trump said the call was ‘perfect’ and was acquitted of impeachment articles on abuse of power and obstruction of Congress.
The CIA, the NSA, and the Pentagon all declined comment to the paper.