According to anonymous sources reported to Reuters, three top officials say that they will be sitting out of the Russian hack investigation, citing a lack of proof for their silence.

The unnamed officials are a part of the Office of the Director of National Intelligence (ODNI), and say they are not accusing the CIA of being wrong in their Russian claims, but say that they do not have proof of intent.

One of the three officials abstaining had this to say:

“ODNI is not arguing that the agency (CIA) is wrong, only that they can’t prove intent. Of course they can’t, absent agents in on the decision-making in Moscow.”

The CIA’s current claim is that they have proof that Russians hacked both the Democratic and Republican party, but that because only Democratic information was leaked, it is their opinion that the Russians intended to skew the election in Trump’s favor. It is this second part of their claim especially that is under scrutiny.

Intent has been a major sticking-point in the story of the Russian hack, with many saying that even if Russia did meddle in the U.S. election, no one yet has been able to conclusively say what their intentions were.

Many are not even willing to go that far, arguing that if the CIA truly had identified clear culprits in the hack as they claim, their identities would have been plastered across the planet in wanted ads much like Julian Assange and Edward Snowden.

If the CIA had truly identified the source of these hacks, why haven’t they moved forward and arrested anyone? Something certainly smells fishy, and the refusal to participate by these three anonymous officials is yet another sign.

As has been made clear, a transparent and thorough investigation must be conducted to truly conclude whether Russian involvement affected the election or if this was all a big Red Scare to allow the Democratic party a bit of reprieve from blame.

You can read more about ODNI’s opinion of the CIA conclusions here.

Sydney Robinson is a political writer for the Ring of Fire Network. She has also appeared in political news videos for Ring of Fire. Sydney has a degree in English Literature from the University of West Florida, and has an active interest in politics, social justice, and environmental issues. She would love to hear from you on Twitter @SydneyMkay or via email at