Rand Paul OpEd: Who Benefits from Afghanistan ‘Bounty’ Leak?

The Roman Judge Lucius Cassius is reported to have often used the phrase: “Cui bono” or “who benefits?”

That very question needs to be asked in examining why an intelligence officer in our government committed a felony by releasing classified information alleging that the Russians are paying bounties for the Taliban to kill American soldiers.

Who benefits? Well, obviously partisan anti-Trump Democrats, and their facilitators in the media, are beside themselves with glee. This felonious leak furthers their campaign narrative that President Trump is either ill-informed or uninformed about intelligence and unwilling to take a hard line against Russia.

At least on the surface, that seems to characterize most of the frenzy about the unverified, anonymous raw intelligence. To the media, it is simply fodder for their Trump Derangement Syndrome.

But in examining the leaker’s motives, it is important to ask further: Who benefits?

Sure, the usual partisan Democrats benefit. But let’s not miss that the war caucus (a.k.a. the Never-Trump neocon warmonger playgroup) is using this leaked rumor to advocate for staying indefinitely in Afghanistan.

As President Trump tries to end America’s longest war, the usual forever war advocates like Liz Cheney are using this so-called “intelligence” to criticize the president for trying to end the Afghan War.

The Defense Authorization bill before the Senate bashes the president’s push to end the war by stating that any attempt to leave Afghanistan after nineteen years would be “precipitous.”

If the leak is not a complete fabrication, it could endanger our agents or their sources in the field.

But, it’s even more important to understand the felony leaker’s motives. If the leaker is part of the neocon collaborative that seeks perpetual war, realize that leaking any information, whether verified or not, that can foment fear of Russia in Afghanistan also impedes President Trump’s desire to end the war.

Too bad not a single Democrat in Washington remembers their once-upon-a-time opposition to forever wars. To Democrats in Congress, it seems more important to beat up President Trump as “weak” on Russia than admit that the Russian bounty leak may well be motivated by war advocates hidden deep, deep within our very own intelligence community.

That is an inconvenient truth that formerly anti-war Democrats now completely ignore.

Dr. Rand Paul is a U.S. Senator from Kentucky.

Scroll to Top