Today, the United States announced that they are striking back against the Russian government. President Obama stated that he would retaliate against Russian cyber attacks.
During the United States’ presidential election, both the Democratic and Republican National Committees were infiltrated. The email accounts of prominent members of Democratic Presidential nominee Hillary Clinton’s campaign were hacked. These emails were given to WikiLeaks, who published the emails on their website.
During the campaign season, it was suspected that the Russian government had ordered the cyber attack, but there hadn’t been evidence of wrongdoing on Russia’s part. However, the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) and the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) have discovered that the Russian government was behind the cyber attack. They have released evidence that shows that the Russian government ordered the cyber attacks.
The United States Takes Action
The Obama Administration began fulfilling its promise to punish Russia for its attempt to influence the 2016 Presidential election. On Thursday, the United States ejected 35 Russian intelligence operatives working in the United States. These operatives are believed to be posing as diplomats to the United States.
The United States also targeted two of Russia’s primary intelligence services. The Obama administration imposed sanctions on four high-ranking officers in the G.R.U. The G.R.U is Russia’s military intelligence organization. The White House believes the G.R.U. ordered the cyber attacks. The Obama administration also sanctioned three companies that are alleged to have supported the hacking.
It is believed that Obama created these sanctions in an effort to hamper President-elect Donald Trump’s ability to “make nice” with Russian President Vladimir Putin’s government. Trump has repeatedly expressed his skepticism at Russia’s involvement in the hacking.
When he takes office, Trump will have to decide whether or not to lift the sanctions that the Obama administration has imposed. This may present serious problems for Trump’s pro-Russia stance.
It’s expected that Russia is now planning a response to the United States’ retaliation. It’s possible that the Russian government will plan another cyber attack.
In an interview, Dmitri Peskov, spokesman for President Vladimir Putin said the following:
“As we have said before, we believe such decisions and such sanctions are ungrounded and illegal from the point of view of international law.”
Russia is assessing the impact of Obama’s actions. It is believed that they will respond in kind. If Russia decides to escalate the conflict, it could result in dire consequences for both nations.
However, it’s not yet clear how the sanctions could affect Russia. There are some who believe that Obama’s actions don’t go far enough to warrant a major response from Putin’s administration.
The relationship between the United States and Russia is at an all-time low. As Russia continues to gain more power in the Middle East, President-elect Donald Trump will have some serious decisions to make.