A few hours after Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein announced the indictments of 12 Russian intelligence officials for having hacked into DNC servers and then releasing that information through online aliases back in 2016, ex-CIA director Michael Hayden observed that more indictments will be incoming, and some of those will be of American citizens.
As late as Friday, Donald Trump reiterated his often-mentioned belief that the Special Counsel investigation into whether he or his campaign members colluded with Russia to undermine the presidential elections is a “witch hunt” concocted by Democrats, even as Robert Mueller filed 12 fresh indictments of Russian officials. In the 29-page indictment, there is no direct allegation that any of Trump’s aides associated with the Russians, but it doesn’t let them off the hook either.
Instead, it takes “no view” on whether Americans were involved — something former ex-CIA director Michael Hayden was quick to point out during an interview with CNN‘s Jake Tapper.
“The indictment clearly says, we take no view on whether Americans were involved, it doesn’t say no Americans were involved,” Hayden noted.
“We are not talking about that now. The longer this goes on, the more I believe we are going to see a widening circle. I would not be surprised if, in the last indictment, we see that it doesn’t mention an American.”
Although the current indictments don’t name any Americans as having co-ordinated the DNC hacks, as reported earlier by the Inquisitr, it does state that “a person who was in regular contact with senior members” of the Trump campaign was also repeatedly in contact with Guccifer 2.0, an online persona allegedly created by the Russians. It has been speculated in some corners that the unnamed person may be Roger Stone, Trump’s longtime ally who is known for his often-underhanded ways of using opposition research. But Stone has previously laughed off the suggestions, saying his communication with Guccifer 2.0 was so “perfunctory” that he does not have any recollection of it.
Still, Hayden claimed that he wouldn’t be surprised to see Robert Mueller’s investigation get into more details about the Russian modus operandi and the American players involved in facilitating the hack. Unlike a number of Democrats who called on president Donald Trump to call off his summit with Russian president Vladimir Putin in the wake of the indictments, Hayden, however, urged Trump to go ahead with the meeting, but told him to press Putin with the evidence that is now clearly in the hands of American intelligence.
“This is your chance, Mr. President,” Hayden said. “We have solid, forensic, detailed evidence that the president can make use of. So, as a citizen, I would say, ‘Let’s do it.'”