On Tuesday, a new book was released that states that a senior Barack Obama State Department official approved an FBI agent meeting dossier writer Christopher Steele in 2016. That meeting ultimately catalyzed the ongoing investigation into supposed collusion between the Trump campaign and Russia.
“Russian Roulette,” authored by Yahoo News reporter Michael Isikoff and Mother Jones magazine’s David Corn, asserts that Victoria Nuland, who served as Assistant Secretary of State for European and Eurasian Affairs, was approached by FBI agent Mike Gaeta for permission to meet with Steele; Steele had asked his handler, Glenn Simpson of Fusuin GPS, for permission to meet with the FBI. The book asserts that once Simpson agreed, Steele phoned Gaeta, saying, “I can’t discuss it over the phone. You have to come here. Believe me, Mike, you have to come to London.” Gaeta then reportedly approached Nuland.
The book states, “There were a few hoops Gaeta had to jump through. He was assigned to the U.S. embassy in Rome. The FBI checked with Victoria Nuland’s office at the State Department: Do you support this meeting? Nuland, having found Steele’s reports on Ukraine to have been generally credible, gave the green light.” It continues, “Within a few days, on July 5, Gaeta arrived and headed to Steele’s office near Victoria station. Steele handed him a copy of the report. Gaeta, a seasoned FBI agent, started to read. He turned white. For a while, Gaeta said nothing. Then he remarked, ‘I have to report this to headquarters.’”
As The Washington Times reports:
Two committees, the House Permanent Select Committee on Intelligence and the Senate Judiciary Committee, are investigating how Obama officials promoted Mr. Steele’s 35-page dossier. It makes a series of criminal charges against President Trump and his associates, contending there was an “extensive conspiracy” between them and the Kremlin.
In 2013, Nuland came under fire for her part in creating the “talking points” that the Obama administration would use explain the administration’s understanding of the Benghazi attacks. She had objected to releasing some information, including identifying the terrorist groups by name.