Democratic Rep. Adam Schiff, the chairman of the House Permanent Select Committee on Intelligence, learned of the reports of Russian bounties on United States soldiers in Afghanistan in February and took no action, The Federalist reported.
According to the report, sources familiar with the briefings claim that Schiff learned of the bounties while on a congressional delegation trip to Afghanistan in February. When pressed if he was aware of the bounties on Tuesday, he said he could not “comment on specifics.”
Schiff previously called it “unfathomable” that Donald Trump took no action to the intelligence, Axios wrote. The congressman suggested that Trump was not interested in hearing negative reports on Russian President Vladimir Putin.
“Because, after all, the president was inviting Russia back into the G8, and it’s kind of unfathomable that he would do that if he was knowing of the fact that his friend Vladimir Putin and the Kremlin or Russian intelligence services… were offering a bounty on the heads of American troops.”
As reported by American Military News, Republican Rep. Chris Stewart previously told CNN’s Chris Cuomo that Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi and Schiff both bear responsibility for the intelligence and could have spoken out about the reporting.
“Nancy Pelosi had this presented to her as well, in much the same format. So did Adam Schiff. All of us did. It was in the general intelligence analysis that we were seeing on a daily or weekly basis.”
According to Stewart, neither Pelosi nor Schiff decided to pursue the matter.
Per The Federalist, Schiff has the authority to brief the full committee and schedule hearings on the intelligence but chose not to inform the committee or the top congressional leaders in both the House and Republican-led Senate. As noted by the publication, Schiff demanded that Trump brief Congress on the allegation.
Patrick Boland, a spokesman for Schiff on the intelligence committee, did not comment on the report or address why the travel records for the Afghanistan trip are not available in the Congressional Record, which is required by law.
As The Inquisitr previously noted, Trump administration officials allegedly began briefing the president on national security threats from Russia less often after he regularly grew angry at them. According to CNN reporter Jim Sciutto, multiple sources claimed that Trump’s news briefers went so far as never to lead the briefs with news about Russia.
Trump’s relationship with Putin has been a focal point throughout his presidency. The president has been criticized for his relationship with his Russian counterpart, who some claim is too friendly.