Russia is using a range of techniques to denigrate Joseph R. Biden Jr., American intelligence officials said in their first public assessment that Moscow continues to try to interfere in the 2020 campaign to help President Trump, reported the New York Times.
At the same time, the officials said China preferred that Mr. Trump be defeated in November and was weighing whether to take more aggressive action in the election.
But officials briefed on the intelligence said that Russia was the far graver, and more immediate, threat. While China seeks to gain influence in American politics, its leaders have not yet decided to wade directly into the presidential contest, however much they may dislike Mr. Trump, the officials said.
The assessment, included in a statement released by William R. Evanina, the director of the National Counterintelligence and Security Center, suggested the intelligence community was treading carefully, reflecting the political heat generated by previous findings.
The White House has objected in the past to conclusions that Moscow is working to help Mr. Trump, and Democrats on Capitol Hill have expressed growing concern that the intelligence agencies are not being forthright enough about Russia’s preference for him and that the agencies are introducing China’s anti-Trump stance to balance the scales.
The assessment appeared to draw a distinction between what it called the “range of measures” being deployed by Moscow to influence the election and its conclusion that China prefers that Mr. Trump be defeated.
It cited efforts coming out of pro-Russia forces in Ukraine to damage Mr. Biden and Kremlin-linked figures who “are also seeking to boost President Trump’s candidacy on social media and Russian television.”
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