May 14, 2022

"Wall Street Journal investigative report this week underlines just how frivolous were the claims in the Steele dossier, and how nonexistent was the attempt..."

"... by Christopher Steele, the vaunted British ex-spy, to verify or even vet them. The sources for many of the Steele allegations consisted of three people 'brought together over a minor corporate-publicity contract,' not one of whom had any inside knowledge of Kremlin politics or the Trump campaign.... To be emphasized with extreme prejudice is Mr. Steele's studious incuriosity about the sourcing of the garbage he passed on to the Clinton campaign, with the only interesting question being how cognizant was the Clinton campaign or did it also not care.... Whatever the Kremlin's own six-figure investment in Facebook and Twitter memes or even its trafficking in stolen Democratic emails, nothing in Vladimir Putin's bag of tricks inflicted one-millionth the damage on American life that the Steele fabrications did.... Mr. Trump may be a compendium of human vices but he will always be the president who withstood the most insidious, organized slur in modern memory. His enemies did that for him, not least among them a largely cretinous media that showed its true colors, which turned out to have nothing to do with fearless and searching concern for the truth...."

Writes Holman W. Jenkins, Jr. in "What Did the Steele Dossier Hoax Cost America? Along with the press, what about the Russia ‘experts’ who played along or failed to oppose the collusion lie?" (Wall Street Journal).

Annoyingly, the WSJ has the wrong link for the investigative report. It goes to a column Jenkins wrote in 2017, something he refers to elsewhere in this new column. But it should go to the May 9th article, "Three Friends Chatting: How the Steele Dossier Was Created/Report that rattled the political world often echoed talk among three acquaintances, including the main investigator and an old schoolmate."

66 comments:

rhhardin said...

It was the idiocy of soap opera women, the network audience, for being idiots. They're grown-up people but prefer the soap opera, a study in irresponsibility.

Can Of Cheese for Hunter said...

Yet - 3+ years of breathless CNN+ Maddow "walls are closing in" reporting ... as if Trump himself were a Russian spy.

All while Hillary used her private server to serve her private bank accounts. Some of that with actual Russian funding.

Not a peep of an apology from these liars.
Our media have ZERO credibility.

Can Of Cheese for Hunter said...

Hillary is behind the lying.

Obama's FBI spy team are behind the actual spying on Trump.

But it's OK -because Trump has an R behind his name.

Can Of Cheese for Hunter said...

Turns out Hillary's Private server let her do bad things.

Turns out Joe and Hunter and the brother of Joe - did bad things.

Corrupt insider Soviet-American hack D press absent.

Leland said...

The Steele Dossier was never meant to be vetted. The mistake was Buzzfeed releasing the Steele Dossier. No one has ever explained what benefit Putin received or would have received from Trump that Hillary wouldn't have been more inclined to provide. Once Trump left office, Biden cancelled a major US oil pipeline making the west more reliant on Russian oil. Biden lifted sanctions on a major Russian pipeline, making the west more reliant on Russian oil. Biden mentioned that the US would not respond to a minor Russian incursion into Ukraine.

Drago said...

Interestingly, to this very day, a large number of Althouse Lefty Usual Suspects STILL believe Hillary's/Putins hoax dossier was spot on and continue to push those laughable, moronic and transparent falsehoods.

Scott Patton said...

"Mr. Steele's studious incuriosity about the sourcing of the garbage he passed on to the Clinton campaign"
In all fairness to Mr Steele, it was a really big check.

gilbar said...

Assuming (for the sake of argument); that the USA , or even Any Part of the world lasts through the upcoming Thermonuclear War started by the democrat party..
In a few years people are going to look back at the Trump Era, and think

We HAD IT, We had it All.. Peace, Prosperity, a Future..
And we threw it all away, because we listened to the democrats

What's emanating from your penumbra said...

The Democrats, including the MSM, carried the water for the Russians.

Christopher B said...

What everybody seems to forget about the Steele dossier is that there were confirmed reports of the same information circulating before Steele made his apperance.

... The second dossier -- two reports compiled by Cody Shearer, an ex-journalist and longtime Clinton operative -- echoes many of the lurid and still unsubstantiated claims made in the Steele dossier ...

In late September 2016, Sidney Blumenthal, a close Clinton confidant and colleague of Shearer’s, passed Shearer’s dossier on to State Department official Jonathan M. Winer, a longtime aide to John Kerry on Capitol Hill and at Foggy Bottom.

According to Winer’s account in a Feb. 8, 2018 Washington Post op-ed, he shared the contents of the Shearer dossier with the author of the first dossier, ex-British spy Christopher Steele, who submitted part of it to the FBI to further substantiate his own investigation into the Trump campaign.


Steele was brought in to make the same false allegations but in a British accent, and to use his contacts within the FBI and CIA to start 'investigations'.

Michael said...

In what galaxy would Mr. Trump be "a compendium of human vices"? He seems to have no particular problems with gambling, drink, or sex (unsubstantiated claims to the contrary notwithstanding.) He has complicated business dealings, but is not evidently personally corrupt - certainly not in comparison with the revelations of the Hunter Biden laptop. He is part stand-up comic, which explains most of what the media calls his "lies." His one unforgivable vice is successfully opposing the Progressive agenda and leading Democrats' lust for power, which in their view makes him guilty of anything else they can think of.

D.D. Driver said...

Has anyone actually actually read the memo as opposed to reading about the memo. The writing style is very mearheaded and frankly childish. Unless you really want to believe it is true (lots of people like that) it's screamingly obviously that this was not a careful, dispassionate act of spycraft.

wendybar said...

Upside down world, where the left could actually perform a Coup with the FBI, CIA and Military help, so they could get rid of the outsider who would let the world know how corrupt the American Government has been for years. They stalked him, and they spied on him. They have YET to find anything illegal he has done, but ignore the illegal doings of the Bidens, Clintons and Obamas. We are fucked.

Drago said...

What's emanating from your penumbra: "The Democrats, including the MSM, carried the water for the Russians."

The russians, ChiComs and iranians have received fantastic and massive returns on their purchase of the Biden family, the entire democratical party, at least 50% of the republican party, all of the legacy media as well as academia.

I would say that history will not be kind to these corruptocrats but that history will likely be written in mandarin so, theres that.

Wince said...

The point of the Steele dossier for the Clinton/DNC was three-fold: a distraction from Hillary's emails and her Russian quid pro quos, a political smear of Trump, and to trigger an official investigation of Trump.

Believing that once the door was opened to a broad-ranging federal investigation into a the affairs of businessman like Trump, surely they would find something nefarious there.

Caroline said...

Gilbar, there is no way a trump-hating spittle-flecked howling democrat will ever, and I mean thermonuclear never, revise his assumptions.

Kevin said...

Conrad: They just fuck you and they fuck you and they fuck you, and then just when you think it's all over, that's when the real fucking starts.

Bob Boyd said...

Mr. Trump may be a compendium of human vices

Mr. Jenkins curtsies duteously.

Chris Lopes said...

Steele was paid to be incurious. The press and the DOJ went along because it fit their agenda. The ruling class at its finest.

holdfast said...

The point was to tie up the Administration in investigations and BS impeachments.

To have the FBI all over them so they might be able to find other improprieties.

To distract them.

To make it so that nobody of quality would want to work with them.

To induce a sense of paranoia, so that they wouldn’t trust the permanent government bureaucracy.

Mission accomplished.

Bob Boyd said...

the president who withstood the most insidious, organized slur in modern memory

Is that what it was? A slur?
I'd say it was closer to a mutiny.

A phony article pretending to address what happened while actually dismissing it as nothing more than hardball politics.

Yancey Ward said...

Steele didn't vet any of this because that isn't what he was paid to do. He wasn't paid to do an investigation into Trump to see if he was clean or not- he was paid to make up dirt on Trump that the Clinton Campaign had hoped the media would run with prior to the election. If that was all the Clinton Campaign had done, I would have no problem with it- I expect campaigns to lie about each other using their bought and paid for whores in the media. However, the Clinton Campaign took it to another level- they used their lying research to get the FBI and DoJ to open a criminal investigation on, first, the Trump Campaign, and then to continue the investigation on the Trump Administration.

By their own written records, it was clear the leadership in the FBI and DoJ knew the allegations were false by no later than January of 2017. I will assert that they knew this the day the Steele Dossier was fed to them by the Clinton lawyers, but they have likely plausible deniability on this aspect. I think Strzok, Comey, McCabe and others pretended to take the dossier seriously because it served their political motives to do so. Everything they did after January 2017 was a criminal operation, and likely everything they did from July 2016 forward was a criminal conspiracy involving the Clinton Campaign.

Brian said...

Let’s remember the Steele Dossier wasn’t the trigger to start spying on the political opposition. The Steele Dossier was the excuse to continue to spy on the political opposition. It’s obvious that the spying has been going on for a long time, but it was discovered by former NSA director Mike Rogers.

The Steele Dossier and the FISA warrants that came out of it, were after the fact excuses to justify why they were spying on political opposition.

DanTheMan said...

Perhaps the Steele Dossier was a Republican 'false flag' operation?

Critter said...

In earlier times, Clinton and her operatives along with a large number of the media would be housed in the Tower of London awaiting their fates. It’s clear there was a criminal conspiracy, but current laws made that exceedingly difficult to prove.

Mike Sylwester said...

The CIA never paid significant attention to Christopher Steele's Dossier.

Robert "The FBI Whitewasher" Mueller and his gang of Trump-hating lawyers did not pay significant attention to the Dossier.

The FBI's official story (told in Inspector General Horowitz's report) is that no Dossier report reached FBI Headquarters until September 19, 2016 -- when the FBI's Crossfire Hurricane investigation of Trump and his campaign staff already was well underway because of other evidence.

========

I think that the FBI has been continuing to conceal its actual investigation of Trump, which was well underway already in 2015.

In particular, Steele's reports were sent secretly to FBI Counterintelligence, which secretly was trying to develop evidence that Trump secretly was working for Russian Intelligence. The FBI's official story that no Dossier reports reached FBI Headquarters before September 19, 2016, is a preposterous lie.

The FBI does not want the real history of its investigation of Trump to be told to the public.

Gahrie said...

I don't want to hear another thing about how evil a president Nixon was.

1) He governed like a Progressive.

and

2) What Hillary, the Democrats, the MSM and the deep state did to Trump was far worse than anything Nixon did.

Temujin said...

Any bets on whether anyone- anyone at all- sees any jail time for this criminal activity?
Now...imagine if this had happened the other way.

Or if Hunter Biden was Hunter Trump.
Or if BLM had burned down blocks of Minneapolis, and buildings in Miami, Chicago, Los Angeles, Seattle, Portland, Atlanta, and Washington DC. Oh wait. They did.
Or if the Buffalo Head wearing shaman had walked around during the riots across the US cities that burned during the summer of 2021 instead of walking peacefully into the Capitol.
Or if the January 6 protestors had burned down blocks in Minneapolis instead of putting their feet up on Nancy Pelosi's desk.
Or if Ashi Babbit had stayed home that day.
Of if Joe Biden had actually received 83 million votes.

Gahrie said...

We HAD IT, We had it All.. Peace, Prosperity, a Future..
And we threw it all away, because we listened to the democrats


Close, but actually:

"We HAD IT, We had it All.. Peace, Prosperity, a Future..
And the Democrats cheated it away from us"

Rusty said...

Drago.
Cue the usual suspects appearing and trying to put a different spin on this.

who-knew said...

Jenkins is too easy on the culprits. Calling the US journalists cretinous is an insult to cretins around the world. Maybe he should have used treasonous instead.

Mike Sylwester said...

Yuri Shvets, a KGB officer, quit the KBG in 1990 and immigrated to the USA in 1993. In return for political asylum, he began providing information to FBI Counterintelligence in 1994.

Sometime in the following years, Shvets began telling FBI Counterintelligence that the KGB had begun in about 1987 a compromise-and-recruitment operation against Trump -- to develop Trump into an agent of influence for Russia's benefit.

After Trump began his campaign to run for President in mid-2015, FBI Director James Comey gave a new impetus to FBI Counterintelligence's extremely secret investigation of Trump. In particular (I speculate), Comey posted FBI officer Michael Gaeta to the USA's Rome Embassy in order to collect information in Europe about Trump.

Pretending to be an FBI liaison officer in Rome, Gaeta really was working directly for FBI Counterintelligence and sent his collected information directly to that office. This was the context of Gaeta's meetings with Steele. Gaeta sent all of Steele's reports directly to FBI Counterintelligence -- although the FBI's official story is that all those reports languished for months in the FBI's New York Field Office.

Original Mike said...

""Wall Street Journal investigative report this week underlines just how frivolous were the claims in the Steele dossier, and how nonexistent was the attempt..."
"... by Christopher Steele, the vaunted British ex-spy, to verify or even vet them."


What does it even mean to "vet" your own lies?

JAORE said...

When (if) the Republicans take the house I'd love to see an investigation featuring Schiff as subpoena #1.

Mike Sylwester said...

In 2016, CIA Director John Brennan and FBI Director James Comey (and other top officials in US Intelligence) feared on October Surprise that would enable Donald Trump to defeat Hillary Clinton in the Presidential Election. More specifically, they feared that, shortly before that election, Russian Intelligence would reveal stolen computer files and e-mails that would show that Clinton had abused her Secretary of State position to compel foreigners to donate money to her Clinton Family Foundation.

Brennan, Comey and the other US Intelligence officials hated Trump so much that they could not remain objective and professional about the evidence for such an October Surprise. Any evidence that might support their idea was accepted, and any evidence that might contradict their idea was rejected.

Although their idea was plausible, the Russian Government never was developing any such October Surprise. The feared revelation of stolen information by the Russian Government never happened at all.

In retrospect all the evidence for any such October Surprise was tendentious and flimsy.

Furthermore, the idea that Russian Intelligence wasted its limited resources to hack and study the computers of the Democratic National Committee during the USA's 2015-2016 primary-election race is absurd. Russian Intelligence had concerns and enemies that were far more important and threatening than John Podesta's e-mails.

The US Intelligence leadership had become so stupid about its election-meddling boogey-man that it worried seriously even about Facebook ads that showed Jesus arm-wrestling Satan.

The US Intelligence leadership was in a panic that Trump might defeat Clinton in the 2016 Presidential election. US Intelligence should not have been so obsessed about the result of that election.

Michael K said...

The check from Hillary's lawyers cleared. What did Steele care about vetting ? Not his job. When Lincoln was elected, the Democrats started a Civil War. They have a limited number of responses to opposition. They just stayed true to their history. Look what they do to black Republicans, for example.

FleetUSA said...

Leland, You have an excellent summary of the problems we have suffered from the hoax except I don't think the Buzzfeed release was a "mistake". It was intentional.

Joe Smith said...

Welcome to the party, pal...

'Whatever the Kremlin's own six-figure investment...'

Spending a few hundred Gs in a presidential election is like pissing in the ocean and expecting it to rise.

Besides, Obama bragged about trying to influence the Israeli election. The US does it all the time.

Richard said...

I don’t think that I am the only person who when presented with a claim that is so outlandish immediately knows that it is bullshit. Why would anyone with a modicum of intelligence believe such nonsense. Or in the words of Carl Sagan, extraordinary claims require extraordinary evidence.

JK Brown said...

The very model of modern disinformation, but likely to be declared true by the new Homeland Security Disinformation Governance Board. After all, it didn't work so obviously the government establishment needs better governance of their disinformation activities.

disinformation
n 1: misinformation that is deliberately disseminated in order
to influence or confuse rivals

William said...

The mendacity of the Steele dossier is not a big scandal. The fact that it's not a big scandal is an even bigger scandal, but, here again, the noise is muted and covered over with the media choir singing melodious hymns to abortion.....I just looked over the NY Times listing of all the winners of this year's Pulitzers. Not a single one went to any reporting that would discomfit a Democratic politician....Who will guard the guardians, who will report on the reporters, who will censor the censors. Only the woke need apply.

zipity said...


Well, you must know that the Lamestream Media© and the Democrats (but I repeat myself) do not care on bit if the Steele dossier is was and always will be a pack of lies.

Much like when the POS Harry Reid accused Mitt Romney of not paying taxes in a speech on the Senate floor. When asked about his flat out lie, Reid said basically "well it worked, Romney lost the election..."

mikee said...

Time to trot out the ever-useful demand that we MOVE ON from these old, tired, refuted allegations about something no longer relevant at all. And especially time that we stop trying to punish the perpetrators. But January 6 - get out the gibbets!

Drago said...

JAORE: "When (if) the Republicans take the house I'd love to see an investigation featuring Schiff as subpoena #1."

A good chunk of republicans in the House as well as 75% of the republicans in the Senate were in on the hoax from the beginning, including the entire leadership team.

The entirety of our intel and federal law enforcement agencies were a part of it.

There will be no investigations. There will be no satisfaction to be had.

Drago said...

Rusty: "Drago.
Cue the usual suspects appearing and trying to put a different spin on this."

The current lefty "limited modified hang out" talking point is that NOBODY on the left/dems/groomers side took the hoax dossier at face value.

Yes, they are that brazen in their attempted rewrite of recent history, despite all the written and video proof that they did run with the hoax dossier at full speed.

Lurker21 said...

Perhaps the Steele Dossier was a Republican 'false flag' operation?

It's nonsensical to think that Trump would start something that would embroil his presidency in years of turmoil. And we have the receipts. The Democrats were deeply involved. The conservative Washington Free Beacon and Republican Rubio supporter Paul Singer were also using Fusion GPS to dig up supposed dirt on Trump, but that doesn't make it a false flag operation. They pulled out when Trump secured the nomination, and the point of the dossier was clearly to hurt Trump's campaign.

Jupiter said...

But he said grab their pussy!

Left Bank of the Charles said...

The Steele dossier did have the air of titillating bullshit from the moment BuzzFeed published it, but Trump’s Russia problem was more centered on the Democratic Party’s emails getting hacked, Russia’s secret social media campaign to help Trump win, and Michael Flynn’s communications with Russia during the transition.

Jeff Session had a perfectly serviceable plan to clear Trump. He would recuse himself, allowing fellow Republican and Trump appointee Rod Rosenstein to pick fellow Republican Robert Mueller to lead the whitewash. All Trump had to do was pretend to cooperate for several months. Instead, Trump obstructed the probe. Why? Trump had something to hide in his dealings with Russia and was trying to shield evidence of Putin’s interference in the 2016 election.

Rusty said...

Drago.
The leftys I talk to didn't even know what it was. When I explain that it was the lynchpin that the whole Trump is a Russian plant fiasco was dependent on they quickly try and change the subject.

Godot said...

We are all a compendium of human vices.

tim in vermont said...

Remember when Obama got caught on a hot mic asking Putin to hold off on a policy until "after the election" when Obama would have "more flexibility," you know, once he had fooled the rubes, to meet Putin's demands?

If asking Zelensky about the source of some this bullshit "intelligence" used in the impeachment against him, remember that Giuliani was his lawyer and had a right to gather evidence in Trump's defense, well if that was "bribery," then Obama's words were swing-from-the-gallows treason.

I don't believe that second one any more than the first, just pointing out the blatant double standard.

tim in vermont said...

Remember when Putin's cronies at Gazprom gave Hlllary's campaign manager, John Podesta, millions of dollars in stock in a "green energy" subsidiary that became worthless within a couple days of Hillary losing? Maybe that's why she was so pissed off at Putin.

tim in vermont said...

"The writing style is very mearheaded and frankly childish."

When I read it, I was waiting for a reference to "Moose and Squirrel."

Original Mike said...

"It's nonsensical to think that Trump would start something that would embroil his presidency in years of turmoil."

You don't have much of a sense of humor, do you?

DINKY DAU 45 said...

subpoena's only valid for the Serfs Ruling class can just claim not valid and there ya go! See present day

Lem said...

We can't believe what we read in the papers today. You have to wait weeks, maybe even years, to find out if something is true. Couple that with the self-censorship in fashion now, and we may be at the weakest point in America's history.

Leland said...

Has anyone actually actually read the memo as opposed to reading about the memo. The writing style is very mearheaded and frankly childish.

I did, and as William noted above, the fact that any official believed it should be the bigger scandal. I thought it was pretty sad they didn't at least try to clean it up to something that seemed plausible.

Drago said...

The Hopeless Left Bank: "Jeff Session had a perfectly serviceable plan to clear Trump. He would recuse himself, allowing fellow Republican and Trump appointee Rod Rosenstein to pick fellow Republican Robert Mueller to lead the whitewash. All Trump had to do was pretend to cooperate for several months. Instead, Trump obstructed the probe. Why? Trump had something to hide in his dealings with Russia and was trying to shield evidence of Putin’s interference in the 2016 election."

Its not possible to fix this level of impenetrable stupidity wedded to shameless mendacity.

n.n said...

Water Closet... gate... way to impeachment. Let us bray.

Drago said...

As astonishing as it may seem, Left Bank is literally attempting to reset the lefty hoax narrative back to May of 2017...as if the following 5 years and the complete demolishing and debunking of all the democratical lies never happened at all.

So incredibly Soviet.

Original Mike said...

"Its not possible to fix this level of impenetrable stupidity wedded to shameless mendacity."

I started to address his post, but the shear amount of bullshit made me back off. Too much work. But I'll do this piece:

"but Trump’s Russia problem was more centered on the Democratic Party’s emails getting hacked,…"

Number 1, Trump didn't hack them, so how is this his problem? Trump Russia's problem was the pack of lies concocted by the Clinton campaign and the FBI's eagerness to use them to bring Trump down.

" Russia’s secret social media campaign to help Trump win, …"

You mean those Facebook ads with Jesus arm-wrestling Satan? The ones that they spent all of $50k on? That constitutes Trump's Russia problem? Absurd.

"and Michael Flynn’s communications with Russia during the transition."

Michael Flynn's new role made it ENTIRELY appropriate for him to be talking to the Russian ambassador during the transition period, as fair minded people on both sides of the aisle acknowledged at the time.

Do you really believe the stuff you posted, Left Bank?

Yancey Ward said...

"Jeff Session had a perfectly serviceable plan to clear Trump. He would recuse himself, allowing fellow Republican and Trump appointee Rod Rosenstein to pick fellow Republican Robert Mueller to lead the whitewash. All Trump had to do was pretend to cooperate for several months. Instead, Trump obstructed the probe. Why? Trump had something to hide in his dealings with Russia and was trying to shield evidence of Putin’s interference in the 2016 election."

The above is a perfect example of being full shit.

gadfly said...

A name that doesn’t appear in the WSJ story that supposedly cracks open everything about the Steele dossier is Oleg Deripaska, even while WSJ puzzles over whether the dossier was intentionally filled with disinformation.

WSJ cites the DOJ IG Report on Carter Page repeatedly, so they know all the references to Deripaska, whose associate Konstantin Kilimnik played a key role in the election interference operation. And they’re silent on Igor Danchenko’s earlier tasking to collect on Paul Manafort for Deripaska. It’s as if WSJ made a conscious decision not to name any of the sanctioned Russians who played a role in the dossier.

Crazier still, it takes a special kind of incompetence to assert, as fact, that, “Mueller reported no evidence that the campaign conspired” with GRU, basing that claim on a report on Bill Barr’s letter to Congress that a judge subsequently ruled lacked candor. Mueller found evidence that the campaign conspired with Russia, just not enough to charge. He also got verdicts or rulings that Michael Cohen lied about his secret communications with Kremlin Press Secretary Dmitry Pescov (in which Cohen said he’d be happy to chase a real estate deal relying on a former GRU officer as broker), the Coffee Boy lied about getting advance notice of Russia’s plans, Manafort lied about passing polling data and campaign strategy to Kilimnik, and Mike Flynn lied about his attempt to undermine sanctions on Russia. The Mueller Report also revealed a Section 1030 hacking conspiracy charge against Roger Stone.

Drago said...

Gadfly stops by to try, once again, to out-moron Left Bank and pretend its still May of 2017.

These BlueAnon Collusion Truther Dead Enders really are something to behold.

Rusty said...

gadfly is why there is a CNN

Zev said...

I love Jenkins' commentary. Really smart.