McCaskill Wants To Know Why NSA Brass Hasn’t Declared War On Russia Already

Chris White | Energy Reporter

Democratic Missouri Sen. Claire McCaskill asked the director of the NSA Tuesday why the agency can’t do more to prevent Russian agents from worming their way into future U.S. elections.

McCaskill, a Democrat who sits on the Homeland Security Committee, questioned NSA Director Adm. Mike Rogers about why the intelligence agency is not doing more to attack Russia for interfering in U.S. elections.

“The notion that they came after us brazenly … and that you have not been given the mission to stop this from happening this year is outrageous,” she said during a congressional hearing after Rogers claimed the NSA is “probably not doing enough” to stop future Russian trolling.

McCaskill and other Democratic lawmakers have ratcheted up their calls for a full-throated response to Russia’s actions. Much of the belligerency stems from a barrage of reports throughout the past two years showing Moscow engaged in hacking campaigns and social media trolling operations against the U.S. political infrastructure.

An NSA analysis in 2017 detailed the extent to which Russian cyber intelligence operatives penetrated various elements of an electronic voting service and equipment used in eight states. The agency also revealed specifics about which elements of the Russian government were responsible for the hacking and what techniques were used.

McCaskill’s comments also come shortly after a federal grand jury indicted 13 Russian nationals and three Russian companies earlier this month for allegedly interfering in the 2016 election.

According to the indictment, which Special Counsel Robert Mueller signed, the Russian nationals began conspiring as early as 2014 to interfere “with the U.S. political and electoral processes, including the presidential election of 2016.”

Part of the scheme involved defendants posing as Americans and communicating “with unwitting individuals associated with the Trump campaign and with other political activists to seek to coordinate political activities.”

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