Donald Trump has rubbished allegations U.S. intelligence officials provided him with information they believe showed the Russian government had dug up dirt on his political and personal dealings.
From Daily Mail
According to CNN, U.S. officials included a two-page synopsis of ‘kompromat’ – Russian for compromising material – as part of their security briefing of the president-elect on Friday.
‘FAKE NEWS – A TOTAL POLITICAL WITCH HUNT!’ Trump furiously tweeted shortly before 8:30pm on Tuesday after the story broke.
Trump’s counselor Kellyanne Conway also hit back against the allegations, attempting to cast doubt on them by saying they came from ‘unnamed sources’, during an interview on Late Night with Seth Meyers.
She then said: ‘I have to say as an American citizen… we should be concerned that intelligence officials leaked to the press but won’t go and tell the president-elect or the President of the United States himself, Mr Obama, what the information is. They would rather go tell the press.’
When Meyers corrected her by pointing out the reports allegedly came from briefings to Trump himself last week, Conway said Trump ‘was not aware of it’.
The material was based on memos allegedly compiled by a British intelligence operative who was considered ‘credible’ by the U.S. intelligence community, CNN reported.
Buzzfeed later published what they claimed was the 35-page memo, intelligence officials are said to have presented to Trump.
Their report pointed out that it contained errors inconsistent with a high level briefing paper. Little of its contents can be independently verified.
The memo claims Russian sources told the operative that they had extensive material on the now president-elect – including a secret film of him in the suite where President Obama stayed in Moscow, watching prostitutes committing degrading sex acts on the bed where the president slept.
The meeting last week was at a time when Trump was feuding with the intelligence community.
Intel chiefs allegedly included the information in order to make Trump aware that the information was circulating within the U.S. intelligence community, lawmakers and senior intelligence officials told CNN.
It was included to bolster the agencies’ conclusion, also made publicly, that Russia had dirt on both Republicans and Democrats, but released only the bad info on Democrats, via leaks to the WikiLeaks site.
The document also charged there was an information exchange between Trump surrogates and representatives of the Russian government.
The charge has echoes of what then-Senate Minority Leader Harry Reid charged this fall.
Reid wrote FBI director James Comey in October: ‘It has become clear that you possess explosive information about close ties and coordination between Donald Trump, his top advisors, and the Russian government – a foreign interest openly hostile to the United States.’
Buzzfeed on Tuesday published memos, which the site noted could not be verified, charging that Russia had been ‘cultivating, supporting and assisting’ Trump for ‘at least five years.’
The site wrote that the documents were ‘understood to be by a former British intelligence agent’ and were prepared for political opponents of Trump.
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