IE 11 is not supported. For an optimal experience visit our site on another browser.

CIA presence in Ukraine gives the wrong impression, senator warns

The presence of CIA Director John Brennan in Kiev may give ammunition to those who see the United States as fighting a proxy war with Russia in Ukraine.

Crisis escalates in Ukraine

April 17, 201414:32

CIA Director John Brennan visited Kiev this weekend as pro-Russian militants seized control of a police station in eastern Ukraine. The reason for Brennan's visit is still unknown

On Wednesday's All In, Chris Hayes asked Connecticut Democratic Senator Chris Murphy: "What message does it send to have John Brennan, the head of the CIA in Kiev, meeting with the interim government? Does that not confirm the worst paranoia on the part of the Russians and those who see the Kiev government as essentially a puppet of the West?" 

"I don’t know the wisdom of having Brennan there," Murphy replied. "We ultimately don’t want this to be viewed as a proxy fight between the United States and Russia." 

"The reality is, is that there's a real danger to Ukrainian military and to Ukrainian civilians by having this kind of Russian presence on the border of Ukraine," Murphy cautioned. "And so it is in our interest as a friend of Ukraine to try to give them intelligence or assistance to try to avoid bloodshed."

While the senator emphasized that the goal of any cooperation between the U.S. and Ukrainian intelligence agencies has been to try to avoid conflict, he reiterated that "It may not be super smart to have Brennan in Kiev, giving the impression that the United States is somehow there to fight a proxy war with Russia."