The salacious and uncorroborated “dossier” compiled by ex-British Intelligence officer Christopher Steele was used by the media to justify its endless attacks on President Donald Trump and accuse him of treason.
The dossier was never anything more than opposition research paid for by Fusion GPS — and not even good opposition research at that. Steele reported rumors and gossip, including some Internet comments, to bolster his report.
What wasn’t corroborated was downright debunked by Special Counsel Robert Mueller’s report, including the allegations that former Trump attorney Michael Cohen went to Prague to meet with Russians.
Now, after two years of using the dossier to perpetuate the “collusion” narrative, The New York Times has finally acknowledged what those of us not parroting the collusion delusion have known for years — the dossier was garbage.
“[T]he release on Thursday of the report by the special counsel, Robert S. Mueller III, underscored what had grown clearer for months — that while many Trump aides had welcomed contacts with the Russians, some of the most sensational claims in the dossier appeared to be false, and others were impossible to prove. Mr. Mueller’s report contained over a dozen passing references to the document’s claims but no overall assessment of why so much did not check out,” the Times reported.
The dossier will now be the subject of at least two inquiries — one from congressional Republicans and one from the Department of Justice’s Inspector General, who is looking into whether the FBI improperly relied on the propaganda document to obtain a Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Court warrant to spy on Trump adviser Carter Page.
(Side note: The Times is one of the outlets that denounced Attorney General William Barr for saying the FBI was “spying” on the Trump campaign, yet when talking about the warrant for Page, the newspaper uses the term “eavesdrop.” Spying, eavesdropping, surveilling, what’s the difference?)
The FBI, according to the Times, appears to have been suspicious of the dossier since early 2017. That, however, was right around the time media outlets reported on the existence of the dossier — and Buzzfeed published the unverified document in a breach of journalistic ethics — and so the fact that the FBI doubted the dossier’s credibility was never part of the story.
Instead, media outlets like the Times spent years talking to “sources” — some of whom were likely Fusion GPS operatives — claiming Mueller had evidence supporting claims in the dossier.
Those who have been beating the drum about the false “collusion” narrative took to Twitter to criticize the Times’ Johnny-come-lately routine.
The Federalist’s Mollie Hemingway jokingly paraphrased the Times’ main point from their article.
“NYT: ‘Ha ha, funny story, you'll never believe it. That dossier we spent years defending as legitimate and a worthy basis for FISA wiretaps on citizens is so unfounded it might actually be Russian disinformation, just like the collusion skeptics warned,’" she tweeted.
Journalist Lee Smith wrote: “Note from @nytimes to readers: we won a Pulitzer for our Trump-Russia collusion reporting but now we think the document that the whole story based on, the Steele dossier, might be problematic.”
Journalist Patrick Poole tweeted: “This is very telling. It was clear in Jan 2017 that this was likely part Russian disinformation since **the very first page** of Steele’s dossier reveals his Source B is “a former top level intelligence officer still active in the Kremlin.” 2+ years later they’re just catching up.”