FBI official: Russia wants to see US ‘tear ourselves apart’

Russian President Vladimir Putin chairs a Security Council meeting at the Novo-Ogaryovo residence outside Moscow Moscow, Russia, Friday, Feb. 21, 2020. (Source: Alexei Druzhinin, Sputnik, Kremlin Pool Photo via AP)
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WASHINGTON (AP) — An FBI official is warning that Russia wants to watch Americans “tear ourselves apart" through disruptive and brazen foreign influence operations.

David Porter is an assistant section chief with the FBI’s Foreign Influence Task Force. He spoke at an election security conference on Monday.

He says Russia’s goal is to spread disinformation, exploit lines of division in society and sow doubt about the integrity of U.S. elections and the ability of its leaders to govern effectively.

Porter spoke just days after conflicting accounts emerged of a closed-door briefing intelligence officials had given House lawmakers on threats from Russia in the 2020 election.

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