Beginning shortly after President Donald J. Trump defeated Hillary Clinton in the 2016 election, Americans were treated to a steady diet of stories from the American Pravda media claiming that he “colluded” with the Russian government to “steal the election.”
For months information meant to substantiate the claim, made in the absence of any real evidence, was “leaked” to various news outlets known to be friendly to Clinton, Democrats, and every known enemy of Trump.
After a while, the leaks and the stories were reduced to a trickle, but they never completely disappeared. Just when you thought you’d heard the last of the bogus Trump-Russia collusion story, another ‘angle’ to it would pop up somewhere — The New York Times, CNN, and the Washington Post being the most frequent distributors of said ‘leaks.’
But then earlier this year a truly unique “twist” to the story emerged: The long-known “Trump dossier,” which was paid for by Hillary’s campaign and the Democratic National Committee, commissioned by a Democrat-friendly opposition research firm, and assembled by a former British spy using Russian government sources — was used by Obama’s FBI and Justice Department to obtain a warrant from the secretive FISA court to spy on the Trump campaign.
Suddenly, the narrative changed from “Trump-Russia collusion” to “Clinton campaign-Obama administration-Russia” collusion; but instead of dutifully reporting the new twist, the American Pravda media went dark on the story.
But why? Lee Smith, writing at The Federalist, thinks he knows: Because these same media outlets were complicit in creating the bogus Trump-Russia narrative in the first place. So reporting on it now means they’d have to divulge their own involvement in the scandal.
If the press did its job and reported the facts, the argument goes, then it wouldn’t just be Republicans and Trump supporters demanding accountability and justice. Americans across the political spectrum would understand the nature and extent of the abuses and crimes touching not just on one political party and its presidential candidate but the rights of every American.
That’s all true, but irrelevant.
He goes onto explain that a January 4 letter to the Justice Department from Senate Judiciary Committee chairman Charles Grassley, R-Iowa, and a senior GOP member, Sen. Lindsey Graham, R-S.C., tells of FBI and DOJ use of the dossier to obtain a FISA warrant and how the dossier’s author, Christopher Steele, “told the FBI he wasn’t talking to the press about his investigation,” Smith wrote. (Related: Grassley, Graham DEMAND info from Hillary, DNC, Donna Brazile, Podesta, RE: Fusion GPS.)
However, Steele told a British court that he was briefing several media organizations regarding the material in the dossier. According to the court papers, Steele briefed The New York Times, CNN, Yahoo! News, The New Yorker, and the Washington Post. In October of last year, he spoke to David Corn of Mother Jones via Skype; it was this article that was anonymously sourced (to Steele) that tipped off the FBI their informant was indeed talking to the media (Grassley and Graham, in their letter, referred Steele to DOJ for a criminal investigation over lying to the FBI).
“The list of media outfits and journalists made aware of Steele’s investigations was extensive,” Smith reported, noting that Reuters also admitted being briefed on the dossier’s contents but declined to report them (though the newswire’s national security reporter, Mark Hosenball, became a cheerleader for the findings after the election).
The long-and-short is this: Steele, along with Fusion GPS co-founder Glenn Simpson, likely persuaded several national security and foreign policy reporters for major outlets that indeed Trump was in cahoots with Moscow. And based on their subsequent reporting, they believed them.
“Did some of America’s top journalists really sleepwalk through Obama’s two terms in office, only to wake in 2016 and find Donald Trump and his campaign becoming dangerously cozy with a historical American adversary? Of course not,” Smith wrote.
Eventually, the “echo chamber” of Trump-Russia collusion shifted from a political hit campaign against Trump and a disinformation campaign aimed at the American public, Smith noted. The reason the media won’t now report on the real reason behind the phony collusion story is because they “helped birth it.”
“To report how the dossier was made and marketed, and how it was used to violate the privacy rights of an American citizen—[former Trump foreign policy advisor Carter] Page—would require admitting complicity in manufacturing Russiagate,” Smith wrote.
J.D. Heyes is editor of The National Sentinel and a senior writer for Natural News and News Target.
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February 19, 2018 at 10:43PM