The Trump administration is narrowing its investigation of administration officials who could have potentially leaked information to the New York Times and Associated Press regarding alleged Russian bounties paid for the killings of U.S. troops in Afghanistan.
The search has focused on less than 10 potential suspects with access to the information contained in the original reports, according to Politico. (RELATED: US Intelligence Says Leak Of Russian Bounty Story Was ‘A Crime,’ Jeopardized Investigation)
White House press secretary Kayleigh McEnany, Director of National Intelligence John Ratcliffe, Central Intelligence Agency Director Gina Haspell and Secretary of State of State Mike Pompeo all criticized the leaks for compromising investigations into the alleged bounties themselves.
McEnany argued at a recent White House press briefing that the intelligence community would likely not be able to reach a consensus on the veracity of the intelligence as Russia will likely move to amplify the public reports to sow discord within the United States.
When asked if the “intelligence does turn out to be true,” she did respond that “this president is prepared to act and will always act with in protecting our American troops.”
“U.S. and coalition force protection is a critical priority for both the President and the intelligence community,” Ratcliffe added in a similar statement. “The selective leaking of any classified information disrupts the vital intelligence work to collect, assess, and mitigate threats and places our forces at risk. It is also, simply put, a crime.”
“We are still investigating the alleged intelligence referenced in recent media reporting and we will brief the President and Congressional leaders at the appropriate time. This is the analytic process working the way it should,” he continued. “Unfortunately, unauthorized disclosures now jeopardize our ability to ever find out the full story with respect to these allegations.”
Neither the National Security Council nor the Office of the Director of National Intelligence responded to Daily Caller’s inquiries on the subject by press time.