Trump: US-Russia Cyber Unit 'Can't Happen'

He backtracks after raising idea
By Rob Quinn,  Newser Staff
Posted Jul 10, 2017 12:33 AM CDT
Trump: US-Russia Cyber Unit 'Can't Happen'
President Trump walks on the South Lawn upon arrival the White House in Washington, Saturday, July 8, 2017, from the G20 Summit in Hamburg, Germany.   (AP Photo/Manuel Balce Ceneta)

President Trump did an apparent U-turn on creating a joint cybersecurity unit with Russia on Sunday, raising the idea and then, 12 hours later, saying it "can't" happen. "Putin & I discussed forming an impenetrable Cyber Security unit so that election hacking, & many other negative things, will be guarded ... and safe," Trump tweeted. But later in the day, after the idea was widely mocked and criticized, Trump backtracked, Reuters reports. "The fact that President Putin and I discussed a Cyber Security unit doesn't mean I think it can happen. It can't-but a ceasefire can,& did!" the president tweeted, referring to the ceasefire in parts of Syria the US brokered with Russia during the G20 summit.

Before Trump's second tweet on the issue, lawmakers from both parties reacted with disbelief to the proposal, warning that it could lead to more classified American information being stolen by a country already suspected of launching numerous cyberattacks against the US, Politico reports. The plan is "not the dumbest idea I've ever heard, but it's pretty close," Sen. Lindsey Graham told NBC's Meet the Press. Fellow Republican Sen. John McCain quipped on CBS' Face the Nation that he is "sure that Vladimir Putin could be of enormous assistance in that effort since he’s doing the hacking," the Washington Post reports. (More cybersecurity stories.)

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