A new report alleges that top committee staff for Rep. Adam Schiff (D-CA), were briefed in February about Russia offering the Taliban bounties to kill American soldiers in Afghanistan, but Schiff remained inactive vis-à-vis the issue. According to The Federalist’s Sean Davis and Mollie Hemingway, “multiple intelligence sources familiar with the briefing” said it occurred when a congressional delegation made a trip to Afghanistan in February.
Davis and Hemingway note that Schiff was asked on Tuesday if he knew about the Russia story before it was printed by The New York Times report, and Schiff answered, “I can’t comment on specifics.” They point out, “As chairman of the intelligence committee, Schiff had the authority to immediately brief the full committee and convene hearings on the matter. Schiff, however, did nothing. He did not brief his committee on the matter, nor did he brief the gang of 8, which consists of top congressional leadership in both chambers.”
Schiff has implied that President Trump did not have access to the full intelligence, saying, “You don’t deprive the President of the United States of information he needs to keep the troops safe because you don’t have it signed, sealed, and delivered… If the intelligence community had intel along the lines that is publicly reported … this is information I think would be negligent to keep from him.”
Patrick Boland, a spokesman for Schiff, had no comment when asked by The Federalist why Schiff allegedly did not divulge information to Congress for months or why travel records vis-a-vis the Afghanistan trip were not recorded in the Congressional Record.
As The Daily Wire noted, asked by Fox News anchor Bret Baier about former vice president Joe Biden’s attack on President Trump over the Russia issue in which Biden said, “He should, at a minimum, have picked up the phone and said, Vladimir, old buddy, if any of this is true and it doesn’t cease immediately, you’ve got a big problem,” Secretary of State Mike Pompeo fired back:
I only wish former Vice President Biden had held the Russians accountable.
We’d have been cleaning up a lot less of a mess. I wish he’d provided arms to the Ukrainians. I wish he had gotten out of the INF treaty. I wish he hadn’t allowed and invited the Syrians – the Russians into Syria.
I could go on, but you’ve got a short show. The failures of the previous administration allowed the Russians a lot of space to move.
We’ve pushed back. We’ve sanctioned more Russians than any other administration in history. I’ll take a backseat to no one with respect to what our administration and President Trump has done to hold Vladimir Putin accountable when he’s engaged in malign activity.
And should we find out that there’s evidence that he’s putting our soldiers, sailors, airmen and marines at risk anywhere in the world – including in Afghanistan, I am very confident that President Trump will direct me, and he himself, will respond appropriately.
Author: Hank Berrien