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WATCH: Blinken Dodges Answering Publicly When Pressed On Whether Putin Threatened Biden

   DailyWire.com
U.S. President Joe Biden speaks during a virtual Hurricane Ida briefing at the White House in Washington, D.C, U.S, on Monday, Aug. 30, 2021. Biden vowed Monday to continue providing federal support in the aftermath of Hurricane Ida, which made landfall south of New Orleans and has left more than a million homes and businesses without power.
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Secretary of State Antony Blinken dodged a question from Rep. Michael McCaul (R-TX) during a House Foreign Affairs Committee hearing on Monday regarding whether Russian President Vladimir Putin threatened President Joe Biden.

McCaul asked Blinken whether he pushed other countries in the region to allow the U.S. to be able to conduct intelligence, surveillance, and reconnaissance operations on Afghanistan based out of their countries.

“Did you negotiate with countries like Uzbekistan, or Tajikistan to put an ISR capability there?” McCaul asked. “And my last question, is it true that President Putin threatened the president United States, saying he could not build intelligence capabilities in the region?”

“This is an important question and one that in its detail and substance, I think we need to take up in another setting for reasons I know that you very much appreciate,” Blinken responded. He later claimed that the U.S. has the ability to conduct intelligence, surveillance, and reconnaissance operations without having U.S. forces on the ground.

WATCH:

TRANSCRIPT:

REP. MICHAEL MCCAUL (R-TX): Bagram went down, the Embassy went down, and we went dark. We have no eyes and ears on the ground. We’ve lost intelligence capability in the region. That includes Russia, China, and Iran as you know. This is a national security threat as China moves in, for all I know, they may take over Bagram airbase, but this over the horizon capability, I believe is exaggerated, it’s not a viable option. It’s too far away. Did you negotiate with countries like Uzbekistan, or Tajikistan to put an ISR capability there? And my last question, is it true that President Putin threatened the president United States, saying he could not build intelligence capabilities in the region?

ANTONY BLINKEN, SECRETARY OF STATE: This is an this is an important question and one that in its detail and substance, I think we need to take up in another setting for reasons I know that you very much appreciate. Let me just say this very broadly, and you know this very well, given your focus and expertise on these issues. The terrorist threat has metastasized dramatically over the last 20 years. And it’s most acute in places like Yemen, like Libya, like Iraq, like Syria, like Somalia, and, of course, we have much greater and different capabilities than we had 20 years ago in terms of dealing with that threat. And in many countries around the world, we deal with it effectively with no U.S. boots on the ground. We lost some capacity for sure in not having those boots on the ground in Afghanistan, but we have ways and we are very actively working on that to make up for that, to mitigate for that, to make sure that we have, you know, eyes on the problem to see if it reemerges in Afghanistan and to do something about it.

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