Yesterday, the Steele dossier gained mainstream credibility when U.S. officials leaked new information to CNN. Today, three current and four former U.S. officials told Reuters they have proof in writing that a Putin-controlled think tank created and executed a strategy on how to undermine American democracy and sway the election to Trump in the 2016 election. Putin has denied interfering, but the proof exists he did.
“Putin had the objective in mind all along, and he asked the institute to draw him a road map,” said one the anonymous former senior U.S. intelligence officials.
According to Reuters, “Documents from the think tank circulated at the highest levels of the Putin government.”
Reporter Ned Parker:
“I think [US] Officials would call it proof of the Russian intent in writing from the Russian government. So, yes, a smoking gun along with other evidence. Like a puzzle, there are missing parts and you put them in. Part of the puzzle is you have the hacking of the DNC and the stealing of emails from Clinton officials. So receiving these documents after the election were the final piece of the puzzle.”
Two classified confidential documents from the Moscow-based Russian Institute for Strategic Studies were obtained by U.S. intelligence officials after the election had concluded. Putin hand-picked the retired senior Russian intelligence officials who run the Institute.
Part of the “October Surprise” that so many media outlets reported would happen was contained in the second of the think tank documents. The first document was written in June, so the surprise was actually more like a roughly June-October undertaking. Then again we have to consider that Putin actually started earlier in March by instructing Russian news outlets like Russia Today and Sputnik to start producing pro-Trump and anti-Clinton news. Reuters identifies key popular pro-Kremlin articles.
The intelligence community released a report in early January stating that Putin had interfered to help elect Trump. The news today verifies the proof is incontrovertible, and that the plan was carefully laid out and executed. There is not yet public proof of Trump’s collusion with Russia, but each day there is more pressure for an independent bipartisan probe to make sure such proof comes to light as soon as possible.
— Scott Dworkin (@funder) April 20, 2017
“Americans overwhelmingly support an independent commission to investigate the growing scandal surrounding Donald Trump‘s ties to Russia — and that should have every Republican up for election in 2018 scared stiff,” said Jessica Mackler, the president of the liberal super PAC American Bridge