NEW ORLEANS, La. (WVUE) - U.S. Sen. Bill Cassidy, a Republican from Louisiana, says if Russia placed bounties on the heads of American service members serving in Afghanistan then Russia needs to pay a big price.
Cassidy said there are conflicting statements on the issue but he added that information has just been released for members of the Congress to review and he will pore over that information in hopes of getting more answers. Still, Cassidy said if Russia did what is alleged then the U.S. must respond in a strong fashion.
“But if Russians did that, then we must, if you will, make them pay a price. You don’t take out our soldiers just kind of let’s take them without paying a price and so they must pay,” said Cassidy. “How we do that? We’re pretty creative in these things, so we can be proportionate, but we need to do that. So, I will withhold further judgment beyond that principle until I have a chance to look at the documents.”
GOP House Minority Whip Steve Scalise of Louisiana issued the following statement to FOX 8:
“If true, the reports that Russia offered bounties to Taliban militants to kill American and allied troops in Afghanistan are highly concerning. The United States will not tolerate targeted attacks on our Armed Forces by Russia or any other country. While we must take these allegations seriously, selective illegal leaks like these are a danger to our national security and actually help our adversaries like Russia. Unlike the previous administration, the Trump Administration has decisively responded to Russia’s actions, cyber attacks, and attempted assassinations. I’m confident that the administration and our intelligence community will work diligently to verify these unacceptable allegations, ensure our troops are protected, and respond accordingly.”
President Donald Trump is facing growing pressure to respond to the allegations. Democrats in the Congress are accusing Trump of bowing to Russian President Vladimir Putin.