Ted Carpenter talks about the Russian bounties story, including all the ways it has been misreported by the media. Carpenter reminds us that the original intelligence that was leaked to the press was based on very flimsy anonymous sources, and may have been obtained via torture. Almost as soon as the CIA introduced the narrative, the NSA came out to publicly assert their skepticism about the credibility of the intelligence. And the Department of Defense, which thoroughly investigates every American death in Afghanistan, hasn’t found any evidence of these supposed bounties. But the fact that the national security state and their mouthpieces in the mainstream media were able to get 60% of Americans to believe the story, even temporarily, was enough to derail President Trump’s plans to withdraw U.S. troops from Afghanistan. Even if the story had been true, says Carpenter, wouldn’t that be all the more reason to get out?
Discussed on the show:
- “How the Media Mangled the ‘Russian Invasion’ of the Trump Administration” (The National Interest)
- “Russia Secretly Offered Afghan Militants Bounties to Kill U.S. Troops, Intelligence Says” (The New York Times)
- “NSA Differed From CIA, Others on Russia Bounty Intelligence” (WSJ)
- “Ten Most Embarrassing U.S. Media Failures on the Trump-Russia Story” (The Intercept)
- “Opinion | Don’t Let Russian Meddling Derail Afghanistan Withdrawal Plans” (The New York Times)
- “BOUNTYGATE: Scapegoating Systemic Military Failure in Afghanistan” (Consortium News)
- The Grand Chessboard: American Primacy And Its Geostrategic Imperatives
- “Ep. 1689 Scott Horton on the “Russian Bounties” Story” (Tom Woods)
- “Speech and the Following Discussion at the Munich Conference on Security Policy” (en.kremlin.eu)
Ted Galen Carpenter is a senior fellow for defense and foreign policy studies at the Cato Institute. Carpenter has written 10 books including America’s Coming War with China: A Collision Course over Taiwan and most recently NATO: Dangerous Dinosaur. He is a contributing editor at The American Conservative Magazine and the National Interest.
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Scott Horton has done over 5,400 interviews with military leaders, whistleblowers, and investigative journalists. Avoid being part of the mob that calls for innocent blood by learning from foreign-policy experts, and spread the message of peace to others.