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(RepublicanWire.org) – New evidence has been made public that Hunter Biden reportedly met a Russian oligarch and Putin ally who is now wanted for the murder of two corporate rivals.

Biden met Telman Ismailov on Feb. 17, 2012, at the Moscow headquarters of Ismailov’s AST Group holding company, according to the New York Post.

His father was vice president of the United States at the time of the meeting, where the shady first son prompted Ismailov to invest money in a company he ran.

Baku-born businessman was accused of paying $2 million in 2017 to have mall owner Vladimir Savkin and car scion Yury Briley murdered on the Novorizhskoye highway in Moscow.

According to the Russian investigation committee, the men had a business quarrel with Ismailov.

Ismailov, who has been granted asylum in Montenegro since February, told Radio Free Europe that the charges “were the result of political and economic persecution by the Russian Federation.”

Ismailov used to own and operate a publishing house, as well as companies providing tours and telecom.

Biden apparently spent two days with Ismailov and other members of Russia’s wealthy aristocracy, reportedly as part of talks with Biden’s investment firm Rosemont Realty.

Hunter met his father, then Vice President Joe Biden, on February 22, 2012, less than a week after meeting Ismailov and at least three other Putin-affiliated oligarchs.

Experts suggest that people like Ismailov wanted Hunter Biden to vent influence for them with his powerful father in exchange for the money needed.

“The only reason anyone—other than a crack dealer or a hooker—would want to meet Hunter Biden is to go see their father,” Jim Hanson, chairman of the Security Studies Group, told The Post. “They sold access, it was their business model. The Biden family was involved in cashing in on Joe’s political career.”

Biden apparently spent two days with Ismailov and other members of Russia’s wealthy aristocracy, reportedly as part of talks with Biden’s investment firm Rosemont Realty.

Experts suggest that people like Ismailov wanted Hunter Biden to dole out influence for them with his powerful father in exchange for the needed funds.

This is far from the first time Biden’s son has been accused of corruption.

Hunter’s firm raised $11 million over five years from his work as a lawyer and board member of Ukrainian energy company Burisma and his work with a Chinese businessman now accused of fraud.

The findings raise questions about national security and corruption as well as potential legal issues, as some question why the president’s son accepted work at power companies despite having no experience in the field.

Documents indicate Biden blew the money even faster than it came in — expenses found on his hard drive show the president’s son spent a dazzling $200,000 a month on things like luxury hotel rooms, Porsche payments, dental work and cash withdrawals from February 2017 to October 2018, according to an analysis of Hunter Biden’s abandoned hard drive by NBC news.

In a February 2017 divorce filing, attorney for Biden’s ex-wife Kathleen Buhle called the couple’s outstanding debts “shocking and overwhelming” and revealed they owed $313,000 in back taxes. According to the report, the couple had returned checks to their housekeeper and owed money to doctors and therapists.

In his memoir Beautiful Things, Hunter admits that the Burisma money financed his bad habits. He writes the extra money “turned into a major factor during my steepest slip into addiction” and “hunted me to spend recklessly, dangerously, destructively.” Humiliating. So I did.’

According to a report, Hunter Biden hired Hollywood attorney Kevin Morris to help him pay a $2 million tax bill — more than double what was previously reported — while under investigation for tax fraud by a Delaware Grand Jury.

Hunter Biden’s tax investigation began when his father was still serving as vice president during the Obama administration.

But investigations were opened in 2018 into possible tax fraud, money laundering and lobbying law violations after it emerged that heBiden may have used political clout to influence business deals.

In October 2020, the New York Post revealed the existence of the now infamous Hunter Biden laptop — a damaged MacBook Pro that took the president’s son to a repair shop in Wilmington, Delaware, but was never recovered.

Since then, more than 20,000 emails have been recovered from the laptop’s hard drive, which was obtained by DailyMail.com, which are believed to provide extensive evidence of Hunter Biden’s shady business dealings.

Former Justice Department official Chuck Rosenberg told NBC that paying what he owes could be seen as an admission of guilt by Biden. Rosenberg said not paying taxes for years, rather than one or two, helps establish intent.

Biden denies any criminal wrongdoing and told CBS News that he is “fully cooperating” with the Delaware investigation.

“And I’m absolutely sure, 100 percent sure,” he said, “that I will be acquitted of any wrongdoing at the end of the investigation.”

A September 2020 Senate report revealed that Hunter Biden brought in $6 million over nine months from his Chinese business dealings, including a $5 million payment from a Chinese energy company with ties to the Communist Party and $1 million for work with an associate later was jailed for bribery.

(RepublicanWire.org) – President Joe Biden struck a defiant tone on Monday while facing questions from White House reporters about his apparent call for Russian President Vladimir Putin to lose power.

“I’m not walking anything back,” Biden said. “The fact of the matter is, I was expressing the moral outrage I felt toward the way Putin is dealing, and the actions of this man, which is just brutality.”

But Biden clarified that his comments did not represent a shift in US policy.

“But I want to make it clear: I wasn’t then, nor am I now, articulating a policy change,” he said. “I was expressing the moral outrage that I feel, and I make no apologies for it.”

Biden also rejected claims that his comments were escalatory, or that he had weakened or divided NATO by making them.

“No, I’m not. I’m not at all,” he said. “NATO has never ever, ever, ever, ever, ever been as strong as it is today. Never.”

Asked why he made the remarks at all, Biden said he was talking to the Russian people directly.

“The last part of the speech was talking to the Russian people, telling them what we thought,” he said. “I was communicating this to not only the Russian people, but the whole world. This is  just stating a simple fact, that this kind of behavior is totally unacceptable. Totally unacceptable.”

At the end of a speech in front of the Royal Castle in Warsaw, Poland, on Saturday, Biden veered off script and declared that “for God’s sake, this man cannot remain in power,” referring to Putin.

The White House quickly moved to clarify that Biden was not calling for a regime change or articulating a shift in US strategy.

“The President’s point was that Putin cannot be allowed to exercise power over his neighbors or the region. He was not discussing Putin’s power in Russia, or regime change,” a White House official told reporters.

Biden has made harsh remarks about the Russian president following his invasion of Ukraine on February 24. Biden has called Putin a “war criminal” and “a murderous dictator.” He also described Putin as a “butcher” earlier in the day on Saturday.

The president’s remarks drew condemnation over the weekend from French President Emmanuel Macron, a NATO ally, who suggested the comments would make it more difficult to achieve a ceasefire.

“If we want to do that, we can’t escalate either in words or actions,” Macron told France 3.

As tensions have risen to historic heights between Washington and Moscow in recent years, which has been closely tied to events in Ukraine, Russia has often accused the US of seeking regime change. 

A 2017 report on Russia from the Pentagon’s intelligence arm said, “The Kremlin is convinced the United States is laying the groundwork for regime change in Russia.” The Defense Intelligence Agency report also said, “Moscow worries that US attempts to dictate a set of acceptable international norms threatens the foundations of Kremlin power by giving license for foreign meddling in Russia’s internal affairs.”

Along these lines, some experts expressed serious concerns that Biden’s speech would lead Putin to escalate the war in Ukraine. 

“The comments by @potus made a difficult situation more difficult and a dangerous situation more dangerous,” Richard Haass, president of the Council on Foreign Relations and a veteran diplomat, said in a tweet on Saturday. 

Some GOP critics of Biden have also accused the president of fueling Kremlin propaganda with his remarks in Warsaw. Asked about this at Monday’s news conference, Biden said he was not concerned that he’d aided Putin’s propaganda machine. “I don’t care what he thinks,” Biden said of Putin. “He’s going to do what he’s going to do.”

Responding to Biden’s remarks on Putin in Warsaw, Kremlin spokesperson Dmitry Peskov over the weekend told Reuters, “That’s not for Biden to decide. The president of Russia is elected by Russians.”

Following up on this on Monday, Peskov said Biden’s comments were “certainly alarming.”

“We will continue to track the statements of the US president in the most attentive way,” Peskov added, per Reuters. 

(RepublicanWire.org) – A group of Russian elites are allegedly conspiring to overthrow Russian President Vladimir Putin and “restore economic ties” with the West, according to Ukrainian intelligence.

“Poisoning, sudden illness, accident — Russia’s elite is considering removing Putin,” declared a Sunday Facebook post from the Chief Directorate of Intelligence for the Ministry of Defense of Ukraine.

The ministry claimed that a group of “influential people” has been forming in Russia who want to “remove Putin from power as soon as possible and restore economic ties with the West, which were destroyed by the war in Ukraine.”

The intel alleges that the group has already been eyeing Alexander Bortnikov, the Russian director of the Federal Security Service and a member of Putin’s inner circle, as a successor to the president.

Many Russian elites allegedly are willing to do whatever they can to get Putin out, even assassination.

The directorate claimed Bortnikov and Putin had a falling out after Putin blamed him for “fatal miscalculations” in the slow-going and costly invasion of Ukraine.

“Bortnikov and his department were responsible for analyzing the mood of the population of Ukraine and the capacity of the Ukrainian army,” the directorate said.

The directorate said its intelligence came from Russian sources, who are “considering various options for removing Putin from power,” including a potential assassination.

The leadership change may also “be an attempt to establish cooperation with the Ukrainian authorities” as the war drags on, the post said.

The Russian economy has been strangled by sanctions imposed by the United States and its NATO allies.

The sanctions have put increasing pressure on Putin, who believed his Ukraine invasion — now in its third week — would be over in a matter of days. 

Across the globe, influential Russian oligarchs have had their valuable assets seized by Western countries, and many have fled back to the motherland or to friendlier nations.

US Sen. Lindsey Graham (R-SC) was rebuked earlier this month after he called for the assassination of Putin from the inside.

“If [Putin] continues to be their leader, then he’s going to make you complicit with war crimes,” Graham said, addressing the Russian people. “You’re a good people, you’ll never have a future, you’ll be isolated from the world, and you’ll live in abject poverty.

“So I’m hoping somebody in Russia will understand that he’s destroying Russia, and you need to take this guy out by any means possible.”

He later tweeted, “Is there a Brutus in Russia? Is there a more successful Colonel Stauffenberg in the Russian military? The only way this ends is for somebody in Russia to take this guy out. You would be doing your country — and the world — a great service.”

Graham was slammed by politicians from both sides of the aisle for the suggestion. White House press secretary Jenn Psaki denounced Graham’s inflammatory comments.

“That is not the position of the United States government. And certainly not a statement you’d hear from — come from the mouth of anybody working in this administration,” she said.

(RepublicanWire.org) – China on Wednesday said it would not consider sanctioning Russia for its illegal invasion of Ukraine and said it will continue with “normal trade cooperation.”

Russian President Vladimir Putin ordered a “special military operation” last week, and Ukraine has endured seven days of brutal fighting that has resulted in the death of roughly 2,000 Ukrainians and 5,000 Russian soldiers, according to Ukraine’s State Emergency Service. 

In response to the deadly invasion the U.S., Canada, Japan, Australia, New Zealand and dozens of European nations slapped severe sanctions on Russian banks, businesses, Putin and other elite members of Russia’s government and society. 

But despite its repeated claims that it respects a state’s sovereignty, China has refused to outright condemn Russian aggression or institute sanctions.

“China firmly opposes all illegal unilateral sanctions, and believes that sanctions are never fundamentally effective means to solve problems,” spokesman for China’s Foreign Ministry Wang Webin said Wednesday. “They will only create serious difficulties to the economy and livelihood of relevant countries and further intensify division and confrontation.”

“China and Russia will continue to conduct normal trade cooperation in the spirit of mutual respect, equality and mutual benefit,” he added.

China surprised the international community last week when two of its largest state-owned banks restricted financing for Russian commodity purchases.

But the limited move reflected China’s reluctance to take a stronger stance against its top ally. 

A resolution put forward by the permanent members of the United Nations Security Council condemning Russia’s illegal invasion failed to pass Friday after Russia vetoed the measure and China abstained from voting. 

The UN held a rare emergency special session of the 193-member U.N. General Assembly Wednesday – a meeting that has not been called in 40 years.

World leaders will seek to pass a nonbinding resolution that calls for the immediate withdrawal of Russian troops in Ukraine and condemns what world leaders have called “war crimes” under the Geneva Convention. 

The resolution, backed by 94 U.N. member countries, is expected to pass by a wide margin.  

(RepublicanWire.org) – There has been a ton of news that Russian President Vladimir Putin has not liked since he started his invasion of Ukraine, but this may be the worst for him.

During an appearance on “Fox News Live” on Saturday, retired Army Lieutenant General Keith Kellogg said to anchor John Roberts that he believes Vladimir Putin “has lost this war,” Mediaite reported.

There were not many who anticipated the resilience of the Ukrainian military or its citizens and, the retired general said, some may have the perception that Putin is losing, but he believes he has lost.

“There’s an old axiom, it’s not the size of the dog in the fight, it’s the size of the fight in the dog that counts, and you’re sitting there with Ukraine, and with the Ukraine fighting and the leadership of Zelenskyy,” the retired general said.

“I think Putin is losing. I think Russia is losing. He’s thrown his first line units against Ukrainians, and they’re beating him. And it’s the heart that they’re showing is incredible. And that’s the reason why the world is rallying there. They see what they’re doing. You see they’re fighting for their homeland and they’re seeing President Zelenskyy stand up and say, ‘I don’t need a ride. I need ammunition,” he said.

“And I think Putin’s got a real problem right now because I think that he’s going to be on the losing end of this.

“He may throw a lot more forces at it, and he may take the city of Kyiv that that is entirely possible just by sheer numbers. But the occupation of that country, now, they will fight back. There will be an insurgency. We could help that as well. And I think if the Soviet Union thought Afghanistan was bad, well, Putin, better look at Ukraine because it’s going to be a real hornet’s nest for him,” he argued.

“And I will tell you right now, I think he’s lost his war. And it’s stunning to me because I don’t think anybody thought that. I thought when I looked at the forces, the numbers that he had his first-line units, one hundred and seventy thousand, all of his air throwing them against Ukraine, and they’re standing up to him. I think the world is just stunned by it, and I’m glad everybody’s pushing back,” he said.

And Putin may see that to as, yesterday, he began making overtures towards peace talks.

“Kremlin says Russia ready to send a delegation to Belarus for talks with Ukrainian officials following invasion,” The Associated Press reported in a one sentence story.

But the damage has been done and the Ukraine capital of Kyiv is under fire from Russian troops.

“I would like to address the president of Russia once again … let us sit down at the negotiation table to stop people dying,” Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyy said in a video.

Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov said earlier in the day that his nation was prepared top negotiate with the Ukraine.

“We are ready for negotiations. At any moment, as soon as the armed forces of Ukraine respond to the call of our president (Vladimir Putin), stop resisting and lay down their arms. No one is going to attack them, no one is going to oppress them, let them return to their families,” he said.

After Zelenskyy’s call for negotiations Kremlin spokesman Dmitri Peskov said that the regime was prepared to negotiate.

“In that context and in response to Zelenskyy’s proposal, Vladimir Putin is ready to send a Russian delegation to Minsk with representatives of the ministries of defense, foreign affairs and the presidential administration for negotiations with the Ukrainian delegation,” he said.

But, he said,. the Russian goal remains the “demilitarization and denazification of Ukraine” and that Ukrainian neutrality would be a part of that.

And Russian President Vladimir Putin informed Chinese leader Xi Jinping that he was prepared to negotiate with Ukraine, NPR reported.

In the second high-level call between the two countries in as many days, Putin apparently aimed to shore up relations with his Chinese counterpart. The two have drawn closer in the runup to Russia’s invasion of Ukraine, with China being one of the few countries to lend even qualified support to Putin’s actions in Ukraine, which have been widely condemned.

Beijing and Moscow, once Cold War rivals, have grown increasingly ideologically aligned in recent years. During a visit by Putin to Beijing for the Olympic Opening Ceremony, he and Xi issued a joint pact declaring that their partnership had “no limit.”

(RepublicanWire.org) – Who would have expected this?

An international hacking collective that goes by the name Anonymous has appeared to declare on Russian President Vladimir Putin and Russia because of the Ukraine invasion.

On Thursday (February 24), the Twitter account “YourAnonNews” made the statement to its 6.5 million followers, announcing the group is “currently involved in operations against the Russian Federation.”

In the statement the group said, they understand it’s hard for the Russian people “to speak out against their dictator for fear of reprisals.”

Speaking to the “Russian people” the group said their operations are “targeting the Russian government,” saying that “while people around the globe smash your internet providers to bits, understand that it’s entirely directed at the actions of the Russian government and Putin.

Following the statement, RT.com 一 a Russian government-funded media outlet, which has been described by the U.S. State Department as a essential in “Russia’s disinformation and propaganda ecosystem” 一 said they had been the target of what they consider a distributed denial-of-service (DDoS) attack.

A DDoS attack is a coordinated cyberattack that attempts to take down a website or server by flooding it with internet traffic.

Also on Thursday, websites for the Kremlin and the State Duma 一 a lower house of the Federal Assembly of Russia 一 appeared to be intermittently unavailable, which could be caused by DDoS attacks.

According to a Reuters report, this announcement by Anonymous follows a request earlier on Thursday by Ukraine Defense Military officials, where they asked for assistance from the country’s hacking community to beef up their cyber security defenses.

The request by Ukraine’s Defense Military officials seemed to be a reaction to several Ukrainian government websites being hit by DDoS attacks on Thursday as Russian troops made their way to Kyiv.

(RepublicanWire.org) – Former President Donald Trump revealed how he would handle Russian aggression toward Ukraine if he were in office in a Tuesday interview with Clay Travis and Buck Sexton from his Mar-a-Lago property in Florida.

Trump pointed to his relationship with Russian President Vladimir Putin as a political card he could’ve played to prevent Putin from encroaching on Ukraine.

Putin has recognized two regions of Ukraine as independent countries, ordering Russian military personnel into Donetsk and Luhansk.

President Joe Biden has proved incapable of deterring Russian aggression toward Ukraine, with new sanctions and negotiations failing to de-escalate the tenuous geopolitical situation.

Despite the affable personal relations between the two men, Trump insisted that he would have drawn a line at Putin’s territorial ambitions.

Trump summarized his stance against Putin’s maneuvering in four words.

“I knew that he always wanted Ukraine. I used to talk to him about it. I said, ‘You can’t do it. You’re not gonna do it.’”

Putin moved to acquire territory during the tenure of President Barack Obama as well, largely forgoing aggression during Trump’s presidency.

Trump said the current situation never would’ve amounted to a full-blown crisis if he were still in office.

“This never would have happened with us. Had I been in office, not even thinkable. This would never have happened.”

The 45th president described Putin’s decision to call Russian troops entering Ukraine “peacekeepers” as “genius,” suggesting he’d consider a similar strategy to secure the southern U.S. border.

“So Putin is now saying, ‘It’s independent,’ a large section of Ukraine. I said, ‘How smart is that?’ And he’s gonna go in and be a peacekeeper,” Trump said of Putin’s plan. “We could use that on our southern border.”

Trump went on to reveal he’d rather deploy American troops to the southern border than to Ukraine.

He also addressed his “extraordinary” polling numbers, arguing that Biden’s poor job performance made him a weak candidate against even the worst possible opponent.

“You take the worst politician in America — I would imagine that that person would be winning” against Biden, Trump said.

Trump also hit Biden on the U.S. withdrawal from Afghanistan, calling it “the most embarrassing moment in the history of our country” and saying he would have removed American troops from Afghanistan with “tremendous strength and dignity and power and respect.”

(RepublicanWire.org) – The Internet is forever and that is a lesson that President Joe Biden is learning in a humiliating way.

The president tweeted, two years to the day that Russian President Vladimir Putin gave the order for, what he calls “peacekeeping troops,” to move into Ukraine, a message that insinuated Putin was frightened of him and not President Donald trump who he was campaigning against.

“Vladimir Putin doesn’t want me to be President,” he said in the Feb. 21, 2020 tweet. “He doesn’t want me to be our nominee. If you’re wondering why — it’s because I’m the only person in this field who’s ever gone toe-to-toe with him.”

Conservatives on Twitter reminded him of this tweet, not so nicely.

“Two years to the day this tweet aged like … well like Joe Biden,” yours truly said.

“Exactly 2 years ago today. Look at this fool,” former Assistant Secretary to the Treasury, Monica Crowley, said.

“This is the worst Tweet of all time. OF ALL TIME,” journalist JD Rucker said.

“I hope CNN and MSNBC are happy with themselves,” Newsbusters editor Curtis Houck said.

“How’s this tweet aging?” former White House Press Secretary Sean Spicer tweeted.

“This did not age well…,” Republican Texas Rep. Pat Fallon quipped.

“You were saying…?” Republican Arizona Rep. Andy Biggs said, tongue in cheek.

“This tweet did not age well,” British conservative Nigel Farage mocked.

“Joe, Vladimir Putin thinks you’re a joke. Joe, Xi Jinping thinks you’re a joke. Joe, the Supreme Leader of Iran, thinks you’re a joke. Joe, Kim Jong-un thinks you’re a joke. Joe, our adversaries, think YOU’RE A JOKE,” Republican Florida Rep. Byron Donalds said.

“Any update on this Sleepy?” Sebastian Gorka said.

“Always remember that the DC media pushed this narrative. @maggieNYT led the way with this phony partisan message. Putin didn’t invade Ukraine when Trump was President. Putin did it twice – when Obama and Biden were in charge,” former Director of National Intelligence Richard Grenell said.

On February 20 it was reported that the United States has intelligence that says Russian troops have been given orders to invade Ukraine, CBS News reported.

The U.S. has intelligence that Russian commanders have received orders to proceed with an invasion of Ukraine, with commanders on the ground making specific plans for how they would maneuver in their sectors of the battlefield, a U.S. official told CBS News. 

The orders don’t mean an invasion is a certainty, as Russian President Vladimir Putin could still change the orders if he changes his mind, the official said.

“The President was very clear that he is convinced by U.S. intelligence that this invasion will happen, that President Putin decided to do it,” CBS News “Face The Nation” host Margaret Brennan said to  CBS News correspondent David Martin. “How was he that certain?”

“Because the intelligence says that Russian troops have actually received orders now, to proceed with the invasion,” he responded. “So not only are they moving up closer and closer to the border into these attack positions, but the commanders on the ground are making specific plans for how they would maneuver in their sector of the battlefield.”

“They’re doing everything that American commanders would do once they got the order to proceed,” he said.

The United States embassy in Russia has advised Americans to have an evacuation plan, citing a threat from Moscow, Reuters reported.

“According to media sources, there have been threats of attacks against shopping centers, railway and metro stations, and other public gathering places in major urban areas, including Moscow and St. Petersburg as well as in areas of heightened tension along the Russian border with Ukraine,” the embassy said in an alert to United States citizens.

Citizens were advised to “Monitor local and international media for updates avoid crowds, notify friends and family of your safety, be aware of your surroundings, stay alert in locations frequented by tourists/Westerners, review your personal security plans, carry proper identification, including a U.S. passport with a current Russian visa and have evacuation plans that do not rely on U.S. government assistance.”

(RepublicanWire.org) – Just moments ago, former President Donald J. Trump issued the following statement critical of how current President Joe Biden is handling Russian President Vladimir Putin and the invasion of Ukraine by Russian troops that is currently underway.

“If properly handled, there was absolutely no reason that the situation currently happening in Ukraine should have happened at all. I know Vladimir Putin very well, and he would have never done during the Trump Administration what he is doing now, no way! Russia has become very very rich during the Biden Administration, with oil prices doubling and soon to be tripling and quadrupling. The weak sanctions are insignificant relative to taking over a country and a massive piece of strategically located land. Now it has begun, oil prices are going higher and higher, and Putin is not only getting what he always wanted, but getting, because of the oil and gas surge, richer and richer. The U.S. was energy independent under the Trump Administration, an independence that we had never obtained before, and oil prices would have remained low. Now, what a mess our Country is in!” – Donald J. Trump

Following the statement being issued by Trump, several presidential historians noted the unprecedented nature of a former president criticizing the current president during a national security crisis of global consequence. Historically, former presidents do not publicly criticize the current president during a threat to national security.

(RepublicanWire.org) – A former US intelligence officer has raised questions about the latest reports from Ukraine, labeling them “just a little too convenient.” With 8,500 US troops committed to Eastern Europe, is the Biden administration looking for an excuse for war?

On February 4, former CIA officer and National Security Council Chief of Staff Fred Fleitz told journalists he was doubtful about the accuracy of recently declassified reports claiming Russia is planning a “false flag” operation to justify an invasion of Ukraine. Fleitz said the information, and the way it was released, made “alarm bells go off for me.”

Fleitz warned intelligence reports are “sometimes wrong, sometimes politicized” and said CIA sources – especially paid ones – often tell the agency what it wants to hear. He said for such important information, the administration can’t just say it has the report; now that it’s declassified, it needs to release the actual document. If it doesn’t happen, he said, we need to be wary.

State Department spokesman Ned Price and AP journalist Matt Lee had an angry exchange over why the report hasn’t been released. Fleitz said if the report has been declassified there’s no reason not to release it; he suggested something was being hidden from the public or the information is weaker than Price suggested. “They’re just saying, ‘Take our word on it,’” he said. “That’s not good enough.”