The National Security Agency dissented from other US intelligence agencies about reports Russia’s GRU paid bounties to the Taliban for killing of US troops in Afghanistan, The Wall Street Journal has revealed.
In a shock ‘exclusive’ based entirely on the unverifiable allegations of nameless intelligence officials, the New York Times reported 26th June that not only was the Islamist group in receipt of monies for every American ‘scalp’ they secured, but Donald Trump had been apprised of the information and declined to act on or publicise it.
DEVELOPING: An intelligence official with direct knowledge tells CBS News there was an intel collection report and "NSA assesses Report does not match well established and verifiiable Taliban and Haqqani practices" + "lack sufficient reporting to corroborate any links."— Catherine Herridge (@CBS_Herridge) June 29, 2020
However, the White House has since struck back, stating the President was never specifically or personally briefed on the ‘intelligence’, and in any event the information was both unconfirmed and contested – a position seemingly vindicated by the Journal’s article.
While no specific reason is cited for the NSA’s dissent on the issue, the agency’s focus – eavesdropping on communications devices – may offer some clue as to why its conclusion differed from the human-intelligence driven CIA’s so radically. As the utterly discredited ‘Trump-Russia’ dossier compiled by ex-MI6 operative Christopher Steele so amply demonstrates, ‘HUMINT’ is often inherently highly unreliable, and the potential for human sources to relay gossip, rumour, hearsay or outright lies – particularly if they receive a financial reward for salacious information – huge.
The DOD, NSA and CIA have all released statements regarding Russia/Taliban Bountygate. All deny the allegations and refer to it as "partial intelligence" and an extremely dangerous leak wrt out national security.— Rich Weinstein (@phillyrich1) June 30, 2020
The Deep State hates Trump more than the love the country. https://t.co/cUs5U2HXLD
The Senate Intelligence Committee stated April disagreement between NSA and other intelligence agencies was “reasonable, transparent, and openly debated among the agencies and analysts, with analysts, managers, and agency heads on both sides of the confidence level reasonably justifying their positions”.
A day prior, Pentagon officials confirmed the Department of Defense “has no corroborating evidence to validate the recent allegations found in open-source reports”.