Transcript for Rep Mike Rogers: Weapons Used Eliminate 'Putin's Plausible Deniability'
Let's get more on this from the chair of the house intelligence committee Mike Rogers. Thank you for joining us. Any doubt in your mind that the Russians are behind this? I think this eliminates Putin's plausible deniability. And he's been operating that way in Ukraine since the beginning of the conflict and him taking crimea. You know this is so sophisticated, you're not even going to hand this weapons system off without having trainers present, maintenance personnel. They're sophisticated, delicate, and highly lethal. The evidence is mounting that this had Russian hands, at least at some point, that led to the massacre of those individuals on the airplane. What does the United States do right now? And the world? If Putin doesn't have plausible deniability. Well, I'm hoping this is an opportunity to get the european allies really engaged. Phone calls with Putin, that's all wonderful. This is as serious as it gets. They just massacred 290-some civilians. It's time to end Putin's gamesmanship in Ukraine. It means the United States needs to end its tepid response. Logistics, training opportunities. We need the european allies to step up its opportunity to put really tough sanctions. If you're going to get his attention, you have to increase these sanctions. You call the United States response tepid. President Obama was out in front of this Wednesday before the aircraft went down. Yeah, but here's the problem. For months now, the Ukrainians have been saying, we need help. Logistics, food, the ability to move fuel and other things. Ammunition, of which has not been coming. The only thing the United States did was they said, we're going give you these mrs, meals ready to eat. That is not enough. If we wanted to be aggressive to try to push back and take control so you don't have rebels playing around with sophisticated, very lethal missile systems, you need to be aggressive in our help for the Ukrainian military. Not boots on the ground. But training. Intelligence. Logistics, food, other things that could be helpful. And at the same time, we need to continue to ramp up sanctions. It worries me that the president has not rallied the europeans to his -- at least to his level of sanctions that he applied earlier this week. He needs to engage in that relationship and start pushing a little bit so we don't have another incident. We have heard from the british and Dutch prime ministers that they're prepared to do that this morning. How about the broader threat of missiles? How worried should air passengers be? Well, obviously, this is something that keeps the intelligence community up at night. If you look at man pads, the shoulder-fired, that is through intelligence, aggressive intelligence, good posturing, working with liaison partners intelligence services from around the world, you can at least suppress their ability to get in position to fire one. When you're at 32,000 feet, these are ineffective. When you look across northern Africa, the concerns there. Libya, and its proliferation of weapons. In the region. Other places. Egypt. It's starting to get concerning that we don't have a good handle on all of those weapons systems. We have programs to go after the weapons systems, they're called man pads. Find them, destroy them, take them into custody. You're never going to be 100% in that effort. That's the concern. That's why aggressive intelligence operations around the world are so critically important.
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