- The CIA is restricting the intelligence on Russia that reaches President Donald Trump and the White House, reported Politico.
- Some officials believe that Trump’s tendency to explode in anger at mention of Russian meddling was behind the decision.
- One source told the outlet that Russian intelligence is being more carefully vetted because it is so sensitive.
- A Washington Post story on Tuesday suggested that Vladimir Putin gave his personal blessing to Russia’s campaign to subvert the 2020 presidential election.
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The CIA is restricting the flow intelligence on Russia that reaches President Donald Trump and the White House, Politico reported Wednesday.
Trump is known to explode in rage when the subject of Russia’s continuing attempts to subvert US democracy are raised, and some officials who spoke to the outlet said that this may be the reason behind limiting the intelligence on Russia that reaches the Oval Office.
The publication said that nine current and former CIA officials confirmed the reduced flow of Russia intelligence from the CIA.
Politico’s suggestion chimes with a claim made by a former Homeland Security official who said he was told to suppress intelligence about Russia which would displease Trump.
Three of Politico’s CIA sources said that general counsel Courtney Elwood was reviewing virtually every item from Russia House, the CIA’s famed department focusing on Russia and the former USSR, before it was forwarded to the White House.
Four of the officials said the reasons for the limits on the flow of intelligence were unclear. One claimed that CIA director Gina Haspel was limiting the information to ensure “quality over quantity.”
According to the report, Haspel has clashed with Russia House figures, firing the head of the unit earlier this year, with one analyst resigning after she called him a liar.
In a statement to the publication, the CIA said that suggestions that Haspel’s decision making is determined by political concerns is “misguided.”
“She rightfully asks difficult questions and ensures intelligence is corroborated, double-checked, and then run through the wringer once more. Any suggestion of a political motive for how she leads this agency is misguided.”
US intelligence agencies have warned that Russia is waging a renewed campaign to interfere in the US election this year.
According to the CIA report, the operation is focused on damaging Democratic nominee Joe Biden’s candidacy and helping Trump.