CIA captured Putin's specific instructions on Russian campaign interference operations last year

CIA captured Putin's specific instructions on Russian campaign interference operations last year

Speaking in his annual press conference today, Putin once again accused the US of manufacturing the doping scandal currently ripping apart Russian sport for "political reasons". And if they do have hard evidence, has it been played for Doubting Donald? But, he asserted, reports about Russian interference in the 2016 U.S. presidential election were being invented to create questions about his U.S. counterpart's legitimacy. Precisely how the CIA "captured" Putin's orders is left unsaid, of course, but the way WaPo's story is written makes it sound like they have first-hand knowledge, not second-hand.

A month before that, NBC reported that U.S. intelligence had developed a high degree of confidence that Putin himself was "personally involved" in the Russian hacking campaign and "personally directed how hacked material from Democrats was leaked and otherwise used". In that case, notification comes from Moscow.

"It was a mistake" for him to be put in charge of the lab, Putin said.

"T$3 here is an unspoken understanding within the NSC that to raise the [Russia hacking] matter is to acknowledge its validity", the authors note elsewhere, "which the president would see as an affront".

Celebrity TV host Ksenia Sobchak, who wants to challenge Russian President Vladimir Putin in the March 18 presidential election, is seen at a big screen as she asks a question during Putin's annual news conference in Moscow, Russia, Thursday, Dec. 14, 2017.

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Putin has already declared that he will not oppose the participation of neutral Russian athletes at Pyeongchang 2018 in what has been interpreted by many as part of a pre-arranged deal with the IOC. Russia's Central Election Commission (CEC) has drawn a conclusion that between 12 and 15 people could be named as potential candidates for the 2018 presidential election, CEC Secretary Maya Grishina said in a televised interview with the Rossiya'24 channel on Thursday. NBC claimed U.S. intel was relying on intelligence about Putin provided by "diplomatic sources" and "spies working for U.S. allies", which suggests it was some foreign service that intercepted communications between Putin and his deputies and then handed over the information.

"There are things that he would want to do but hasn't been able to so far, like reforming health care or other goals". "If you say 'Russian interference, ' to him it's all about him", said one GOP strategist to the paper.

Then he moved on from the presidential hopeful.

Asked why Navalny was barred from race, Putin likened Navalny to former Georgian president-turned-Ukrainian opposition leader, Mikheil Saakashvili, who has defied the Ukrainian government with a series of recent anti-corruption protests. Putin told them to let him finish the question, then blamed Ukraine for the conflict in which Russia annexed the Crimean Peninsula and backed separatists in eastern Ukraine.