DNI Coats Thinks Sanctions on Russia Are Coming Next Week

By Susan Jones | March 6, 2018 | 12:20pm EST
Director of National Intelligence Dan Coats testified before the Senate Armed Services Committee on March 6, 2018. (Photo: Screen grab/C-SPAN)

(CNSNews.com) - The Trump administration has not yet imposed mandatory sanctions on Russia, as required by Congress, in response to Russian meddling in the U.S. election, but it should happen soon, the Director of National Intelligence said on Tuesday.

"I do believe what we've done has not (been) enough," DNI Dan Coats told the Senate Armed Services Committee. "Sanctions are under consideration, and the Secretary of Treasury has indicated, I think as early as next week, he'll be listing some of those sanctions.

 

"But clearly we have not successfully countered in an offensive way, rather than a defensive way, how to deal with some of the cyber attacks."

Coats said he believes the Russians "have seen some successes" in their effort to undermine U.S. democracy, and he said it's the job of the intelligence community "to inform the American people of this so that they take more -- exercise better judgement in terms of what is real news."

In his opening statement to the committee, Coats said he expects Russia "to continue using propaganda, social media, false-flag personas, sympathetic spokespeople, and other means of influence to try to exacerbate social and political fissures in the United States.”

Sen. Elizabeth Warren (D-Mass.) said all Americans, regardless of party affiliation, "should be appalled that Vladimir Putin thinks he gets to play a role in the outcome of our elections."

"I couldn't agree more," Coats replied, repeating that "transparency" must be part of the effort to make the public aware of what is going on.

Warren said if the Trump administration doesn't impose sanctions on Russia, "then we are not using every tool we can to effectively deter Russia from undermining our democracy."

Coats repeated that he believes Treasury Secretary Steve Mnuchin is going to be announcing those sanctions in a week.

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