ENC veterans react to allegations President Trump knew about Russian bounties for American soldiers

NBC News has confirmed White House officials were informed of the information as early as last year.
Published: Jul. 1, 2020 at 7:39 PM EDT
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JACKSONVILLE, N.C. (WITN) - Veterans in eastern North Carolina are saying if accusations that President Donald Trump knew of Russian bounties on American soldiers’ lives, it would be incredibly disturbing, but not surprising.

“I would assume they’ve done that and probably a lot worse,” said Bill Woolfolk, a retired Marine. “Whether Russia is actually paying the Afghanis, or supplying them with ammo and guns to kill our troops, to me, it’s six one half dozen the other. They’re the same thing. I don’t agree with it, I think we should do something about it. But really what can you do?”

NBC News has confirmed that White House officials were made aware of the intelligence of a possible cash bounty offered to the Taliban by the Russians for American lives in the Middle East as early as last year, but Trump and White House Press Secretary Kayleigh McEnany insist the president was never briefed on the information.

“The president does read, and he also consumes intelligence verbally,” said McEnany during a press briefing Tuesday. “This president is the most informed person on planet earth when it comes to the threats that we face.”

Retired Lieutenant Colonel Kim Kimball said the intelligence is unconfirmed and cautioned against any further conclusions being made. But he did say, if the information is true, it would be a major breach of trust.

“There are people undoubtedly that know the truth and that will come out,” said Kimball. “If all these allegations are true, and the president did not take action, I’d be extraordinarily disappointed and take it to be an incredible betrayal of loyalty for the American fighting forces.”

Other reports suggest the Russian bounties could be to blame for the deaths of three marines in a car bombing in April of 2019. None of the marines were stationed in North Carolina.

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