Friday, August 9, 2019

Who Wrote The Dossier--And Does It Matter?

The release of heavily (and absurdly) redacted copies of the Bruce Ohr FD-302s--in which Ohr recounts what Chris Steele and Glenn Simpson told him--has renewed interest in the authorship of the "Steele" dossier. Because the 302s basically amount--for the most part--to a rehash of the dossier. There are, to be sure, some added details. For example, it turns out that Steele was in contact with John McCain's office at a very early point in the development of the dossier--prior to October, 2016.

Dan Bongino did a very nice interview this morning with Fox. In it he articulated in fairly persuasive fashion his theory on the dossier. Basically--and this is the 25 words or less version, more or less--Bongino believes that Steele was the "front man" for the dossier, but that Nellie Ohr wrote it. In other words, Steele provided cred for the dossier--he was former MI6 and had worked in Russia (albeit long ago), and he was a known informant for the FBI in a major international case. Here's that interview:

It pays to listen closely, or maybe listen to the interview more than once. I presented the brief version, but Bongino's full version is a bit more nuanced than that. He points out, naturally, that Steele may have been "a part" of putting together the eponymous dossier. But, he notes, we know that Nellie Ohr put together a different dossier--a dossier on Paul Manafort. More on that in just a moment. However, as he has in the past, Bongino also pushes the notion that a 2007 article by Glenn Simpson (Nellie's boss at Fusion GPS) in the WSJ actually amounted to the dossier--all that was done, claims Bongino, is change a few names.

Well, I've read that article (subscription required), and long before today. It isn't the dossier with the names changed. What it shows, however, is that Glenn Simpson was certainly an authority on Russia's (and Ukraine's) politically connected "mafia." He was, and is, also a world class authority on Paul Manafort--which explains, in part, why he would have Nellie write a "dossier" on Manafort (for my part, I continue to wonder whether there's a back story to how Manafort wound up with the Trump campaign--I know the "official" version). So did Glenn Simpson actually write the dossier? Someone with his deep knowledge--probably deeper than Steele's or Nellie's--of the Russian oligarchic mafia could easily frame the dossier, construct a narrative that others could flesh out. Ohr's reporting certainly gives the impression that Simpson was very much involved in the dossier.

Commenter Mike Sylwester thinks there may be something in the theory that Sergey Skripal wrote, or was involved in the production of, the dossier. Remember Skripal? He's the Russian who was recruited by Chris Steele back in the day, and was poisoned (along with his daughter Iulia) in March, 2018. He was working for Chris Steele's firm, Orbis International at the time, and the official UK government version of Skripal's poisoning is--to put it charitably--dodgy at best. Could Skripal have provided some expertise to lend the dossier verisimilitude? It makes sense to me.

So, at this point, I'm willing to believe that the dossier was a collective project, with each participant providing something from their own knowledge or past experience. The important thing, of course, is that the rubber really meets the road when US Government officials take the dossier and put it to official use, to justify obtaining a FISA warrant on Carter Page. Opposition research is one thing, but when FBI and DoJ officials work hand in hand with the opposition research contractor for a political campaign--for POTUS, no less--that's really big. And that government involvement is where we start finding documentable felony violations. Which isn't to say I don't want to know "the rest of the story." I do.

Rudy Giuliani touched on the rest of the story last night, as did Bongino today. As Rudy put it,

You can’t BELIEVE what’s going to come out! ... There’s plenty of evidence of what happened in Ukraine. Plenty of evidence of what happened in UK. In Italy. This was a massive conspiracy!

Bongino alludes to the monumental character of this conspiracy, as well, when he points out Steele's cooperation with US authorities within the last month or so--with Michael Horowitz's OIG, to be specific. Steele agreed to cooperate because he thought he was about to be "sold down the river" (By whom? By the UK? By US actors?). The result was a 16 hour interview with OIG.

Sixteen hours! Believe me, if you have your act together, you can cover a lot of ground in 16 hours. In a prior life I was interviewed by OIG for eight hours. What I can tell you is that they came prepared. There was no down time, no fumbling around, like, what will we ask next? For anyone thinking that Horowitz is doing a coverup--it's hard for me to believe that that 16 hour interview was simply staged.

I think the Dems know that, too. I think the knowledge of what's about to hit them is driving their distraction tactics. I doubt that it will gain any traction at all.


  1. I don't think it matters who wrote it. It's not illegal to write fiction.
    But it sure came in handy for the Obama crew to retroactively justify their "investigation" of Trump. Trump became the presumptive GOP nominee on May-4 2016 when Cruz & Kasich stopped their campaigns. But Papadopolous had already been dirtied by the Obamam crew two months earlier on March-12 2016 via Mifsud.

    I don't think Steele was involved with the dossier until June 2016. The dossier was just smoke for the Obama crew to hide their preexisting activities.

    1. Right--it doesn't really matter, except that the coup members knew it was unreliable when they submitted it to FISC.

  2. Glenn Simpson, Christopher Steele, Pablo Miller and Sergey Skripal made their livings by writing scare-stories about Russia -- about Vladimir Putin, Russian Intelligence, Russian "oligarchs" and the Russian Mafia. They wrote these stories month after month, year after year. The stories fed their families and put their children through college.

    Bruce and Nellie Ohr, Peter Strzok, Lisa Page, Andrew McCabe and James Comey made their livings the same way.

    James Clapper and John Brennan and many other officials made their livings the same way.

    Various officials in British Intelligence, Italian Intelligence and Australian Intelligence made their livings the same way.

    All these writers of scare-stories got good opportunities to prove their worth when Donald Trump became involved actively in politics. These writers whipped up an international hysteria that ....

    * Trump was involved in Russian corruption

    * Trump was doing perverted stuff at his beauty pageants in Russia

    * Trump was blackmailed by Russian Intelligence

    * Trump was sending his lawyer to meet Russian spies in Prague

    * Computers in Trump Tower were communicating secretly with Russia Bank's computers

    * Trump's foreign-policy advisor Carter Page was a witting agent of Russian Intelligence

    * Trump's foreign-policy advisor George Papadopoulos was getting secret info from Josef Mifsud, a Russian agent

    * Trump's foreign-policy advisor Michael Flynn was having an affair with a Russian translator

    * Trump's campaign chief Paul Manafort was giving secret polling data to a Russian spy

    * Manafort and Trump's sons were meeting with Russian operatives in Trump Tower in order to discuss Russian Intelligence's dirt about Hillary Clinton.

    * And so forth and so on -- endless nonsensical scare stories about Russia.

    About three weeks before Trump was inaugurated, President Obama expelled 35 Russian diplomats from the USA. Then Clapper published a preposterous "intelligence assessment" that was mostly about Russia's RT television company.


    That is the context of the poisoning of the Skripals in the UK in March 2018. More scare-stories about Russians -- about Russian spies rubbing nerve gas onto a doorknob in Salisbury, UK. Another reason to expel many more Russian diplomats from the UK, from the USA and from other European countries.

    President Trump is meeting with President Putin while Russian spies are spreading nerve agents around in the USA, endangering many people! Nerve agents that can kill you in one second, if just one drop gets on your skin!!

    Russia is dropping chemical bombs on Syria too!


    Let's find out what really happened in the USA's 2016 election and in the Skripal poisoning. Let's stop with the scare-stories and tell the public the real facts.

    For example, who told Mifsud and Papadopoulos to meet? Russian Intelligence? Or some other country's Intelligence?

    For example, let's look at all the CCTV videos that record what happened in Salisbury on March 4, 2018. Let's see the videos of the couple with the red bag who met with the Skripals at the park bench. Let the public see what that couple looked like. Let the public identify the couple that gave the red bag to the Skripals at the park bench.

    Let the Skripals tell the public what happened on that day.

    Joining Some Dots on the Skripal Case

    Summing up the Official Claims in the Salisbury Poisonings: Weighed in the Balances and Found Wanting

    1. In Simpson's case there was also a longtime anti-Republican angle.

    2. It seems that the Skripals had agreed to meet someone at a public bench at a set time. As the Skripals were sitting on the bench, another couple approached them, gave them a red bad and departed. While still sitting on the bench, the Skripals opened the red bag and were poisoned.

      Emergency workers came to the bench and took the Skripals and the red bag to a hospital. At some point, an investigator likewise looked into the bag, and he too was poisoned.

      There must be plenty of CCTV video recordings that show the couple who brought the red bag to the bench. However, only a few seconds of poor-quality video have been shown to the public.

      In these circumstances, the obvious suspicion is that the the video recordings are being hidden from the public -- because the couple with the red bag might be identified. The couple are not Russians, and they will be recognized by someone if the couple is seen by the entire British public.

      In his blog article The Salisbury Poisoning One Year On: An Open Letter to the Metropolitan Police, Slane discusses the ubiquity of CCTV cameras in Salisbury, where he lives. See also the comments under Slane's article, for further discussion of CCTV cameras in Salisbury.

      As the CIA Director, Gina Haspel briefed President Trump that children and ducks were affected by the nerve gas that Russian spies supposedly spread in Salisbury. Haspel used these false reports to convince Trump that even more Russian diplomats should be expelled.

      Haspel was the chief of CIA's London Station during the 2015-2016 election race.

    3. With Coats and Gordon gone and Wray on the shortest of leashes, I have to assume Haspel is being targeted.

  3. Six ways to Sunday!