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Journalist Glenn Greenwald urges the press to be skeptical of the new intelligence report on Russian hacking

Greenwald: "You're not obligated through patriotism or decency to accept what the CIA says"

(CNN) —  

Journalist Glenn Greenwald said Sunday that the recently released intelligence report on Russian hacking contained no “convincing evidence,” and urged journalists to be skeptical of US intelligence claims.

After CNN’s Brian Stelter asked him to lay out his case, the Pulitzer Prize-winning reporter made reference to “critical lessons” the press should learn from the past when it comes to trusting government information.

“The same lesson in 2002 when a group of bipartisan senators assured the nation that the intelligence community convinced them that Saddam (Hussein) has weapons of mass destruction … and the same lesson we learned in 2013, when, just months before the (Edward) Snowden reporting, James Clapper, Obama’s top national security official, lied to the faces of the country when he said that he wants to assure everybody that the NSA doesn’t collect data,” he said.

“The lesson is we don’t blindly and uncritically accept the claims of the intelligence community, especially provocative claims about a foreign adversary, without seeing convincing evidence presented by them that those claims are true,” Greenwald added.

As for the US intelligence report released Friday, “we absolutely have not seen that in this case,” he said. Much of the information on the hacking remains classified and was not released to the public.

“You’re not obligated through patriotism or decency to simply accept what the CIA says,” Grennwald said.

“On the key claims that Putin directed this hacking and that he did so to elect Donald Trump, there is no evidence for it … just CIA assertions over and over, and that just simply isn’t enough,” Greenwald said.