Hey, so, remember that whole story about Russia putting bounties on American troops heads in Afghanistan? And all while Donald Trump looked the other way because of his adoration for Vladimir Putin?

It was a big deal. A scandal. Possibly treason, even.

Well, it’s been a while since we last heard about it. Maybe this is why:


But on Thursday, the Biden administration announced that U.S. intelligence only had “low to moderate” confidence in the story after all. Translated from the jargon of spyworld, that means the intelligence agencies have found the story is, at best, unproven—and possibly untrue.

“The United States intelligence community assesses with low to moderate confidence that Russian intelligence officers sought to encourage Taliban attacks U.S. and coalition personnel in Afghanistan in 2019 and perhaps earlier,” a senior administration official said.

Kinda deflates the scandal balloon, doesn’t it?

Speaking of breath, don’t hold yours. Media were really heavily invested in this thing:

How embarrassing.

And don’t even get us started on how invested the Democrats were:

But Democrats ran with the election-time story. Then-candidate Biden called it a “horrifying revelation” if true. The senior Democrat on the Senate Foreign Affairs Committee, Robert Menendez (D-NJ), introduced a measure to sanction Russia for the alleged bounties. Congressional Democrats claimed to have been insufficiently briefed on the account, which the Trump White House called a “hoax,” and suggested there was a cover-up underway. When Trump himself denied being briefed on the story, House intelligence committee chairman Adam Schiff (D-CA) remarked, “Is this an issue where they cannot tell the president things he doesn’t want to hear when it comes to Vladimir Putin and Russia?”

Added House Majority Leader Steny Hoyer (D-MD) in June, “I think we knew the White House perspective, what we need to know is the intelligence perspective.” Now he knows.

And who could forget this one?

And now, here we are. Another narrative that was accepted and shared by our Guardians of Truth because it made Donald Trump look bad turned out to be bogus.

Editor’s note: This post has been updated with additional tweets.