US Counterspy Chief Warns Russia, China, Iran Trying to Meddle in 2020 Election
On 7th august, top US counterintelligence official warned that Russia, China and Iran will try to play a hand in the 2020 presidential election, with Russia already trying to undercut the democratic party’s Joe Biden.
In a rather odd public statement, William Evanina, the director of national counterintelligence and security center said the 3 countries were using online disinformation and other means to try and influence voters, cause disorders and undermine American voters’ confidence in the democratic election.
President Trump when asked at a news conference how he would react to an interference on the voting day, Trump said,” We’re going to watch all of them, we have to be very careful.” Surprisingly, he believes Russia, China and Iran want him to lose the election.
Adversaries from other countries may also try interfering by trying to sabotage the voting process, stealing election related data or questioning the validity of the elections itself.
Evanina says,” It would be difficult for our adversaries to interfere with or manipulate voting results at scale.”
Trump has repeated his fears about the mail-in ballots and has also said, those are the biggest risks to integrity of the elections. He claims that it is easier for foreign countries to now forge ballots and send them in. Trump has never liked the idea of main in ballots ever since the new spike in coronaviruses made it highly unlikely that any voters would come out on November 3rd saying that despite the extensive research suggesting the contrary of mail-in voting being vulnerable to fraud.
Many intelligence agencies claim that trump had received help from Russia to undercut Clinton's chances of success in the 2016 elections. Trump has only bristled at the findings and Russia has denied these claims.
Biden’s campaign has claimed that Trump has, “publicly and repeatedly invited, emboldened, and even tried to coerce foreign interference in American elections.”
Evanina has provided his findings of Andriy Derkach, who is a pro-Russia Ukrainian politician has been spreading misinformation about corruption and through publicized leaked phone calls.
Republicans have even launched investigations to find out more about Biden’s son’s business activities in Ukraine.
Evanina assesses that China would not want trump to win the election as they consider him to be too unpredictable. He says China has been pushing effort to interfere with US politics and exert more pressure on politicians who have an anti-China stance.
Iran on the other hand is likely to use online tactics such as spreading wrong information to discredit US institutions and Trump to stir up voters’ discontent as said by Evanina.
Leaders of the Senate Intelligence Committee have thanked Evanina for his findings and warnings and have also said that all Americans “should endeavor to prevent outside actors from being able to interfere in our elections, influence our politics, and undermine confidence in our democratic institutions.”
Trump re-election campaign spokesperson Tim Murtaugh has insisted that trump has been harder on Russia than any administration in the history of the US. Murtaugh even claims that trump needs no foreign interference to win the election and will beat Joe Biden fair and square.
Reporter: Jovan H