Russian President Vladimir Putin's spokesman said today that Democrats blaming Russia for hacking email servers amounts to a "paranoid" attempt by American politicians to play what he called "the Russian card" during the campaign.
Dmitry Peskov continued, "There's nothing new here, it's a sort of traditional pastime of theirs. We think it's not good for bilateral ties but we realize that we have to go through this unfavorable period."
The FBI announced Monday it was investigating how the hack occurred, saying "a compromise of this nature is something we take very seriously."
Hacked emails posted by Wikileaks Friday suggested the Democratic National Committee was favoring Hillary Clinton over her primary rival, Sen. Bernie Sanders.
Clinton's campaign on Monday blamed Russia for the hack. Republican candidate Donald Trump has dismissed claims that it was committed by Russia for his benefit, calling them a joke.
Michael Buratowski, a cyber analyst with the firm that investigated the hack, said his near-certainty that Russia was to blame was based on evidence such as the hackers using Russian internet addresses, Russian language keyboards, and the time codes corresponding to business hours in Russia, as well as the sophistication of the hack.
An editorial in The Washington Post today bemoaned the alleged hack: "Putin's suspected meddling in a U.S. election would be a disturbing first." However, foreign affairs experts say it's standard operating procedure for governments to interfere in the domestic politics of their enemies and their allies.
What would the Kremlin have to gain? How should the U.S. respond?
With files from the Associated Press.
Robert English, Deputy Director of the USC School of International Relations; he specializes in Russian affairs and just returned from three weeks in the region