Juxtaposition … always rewarding when Emptywheel alignes her views and analysis with my own lone deduction of what is factual and what is bs/propaganda. Putin and Netanyahu hand in glove, united in preference for Trump as US President, a revenge for Clinton’s policy of regime change in MENA states and Obama’s push for the Iran nuclear deal. Throughout its young history of 70 years, the state of Israel knows better than anyone: Israel First!

Former CIA officer Daniel Hoffman argues the near misses are a mark of Russian disinformation | Emptywheel |

    [Some links added and highlights in article are mine – Oui]

Democrats Embraced a Flawed Dossier–And Gave Republicans an Opening | Politico – Feb. 1, 2018 | by Marcy Wheeler

Sometime around May 2016, according to The New York Times, the longtime law firm for the Democratic Party, Perkins Coie, engaged the private research firm Fusion GPS to conduct opposition research on Donald Trump. While the engagement might have been better handled (say, by insulating the official party apparatus better from Fusion), the act of commissioning the firm should not shock us–opposition research is a pretty standard feature of modern politics. Indeed, months earlier in September or October 2015, the Washington Free Beacon, which is funded in part by billionaire Paul Singer, had engaged Fusion GPS to dig up dirt on Trump.

More below the fold …

And while Democrats were working with Fusion, Republicans were working with a Steve Bannon enterprise to dig up financial dirt on Hillary Clinton and expose the alleged influence-peddling of her family’s foundation.

Fusion, of course, then took its research in a new direction by hiring Christopher Steele, a former top British intelligence official with deep ties in Moscow who was held in high regard in Washington. He produced a series of salacious, but unverified reports that are now universally referred to as “the Steele dossier,” and their publication 10 days before Trump’s inauguration supercharged claims on the left that the president or his team may have conspired with Russia to win the 2016 election.

Yet, in part because of the way Democrats have handled the aftermath of the leak of the dossier, that very typical act of hiring an oppo research firm has turned into one of the biggest manufactured scandals of the Trump administration, one Republicans are trying to use to undermine an investigation into the growing evidence of Trump ties to Russia. But Steele’s dossier forms only a small portion of the putative case against Trump–which is why it has been such a mistake for Democrats to rally behind it. Reporters, two congressional committees and special counsel Robert Mueller have sifted through reams of other material suggesting that something fishy was indeed going on, and very little of it came from Steele.

Yet Democrats continue to invest in the intelligence dossier they funded as a key piece of evidence against Trump. They do so even while other, far more damning evidence–such as the report that George Papadopoulos learned Russians had “dirt,” in the form of Clinton emails even before the Democratic National Committee figured out it had been hacked, or the meeting Donald Trump Jr. set up six weeks later to learn what kind of dirt some other Russians had to offer (“If it’s what you say I love it,” he wrote in an email)–has come to light. Well after both those damning details were public, for example, Rachel Maddow dedicated an entire show to the dossier.

In November, former Clinton campaign Chairman John Podesta claimed the dossier was “looking better and better with age.” In that same time frame, Rep. Adam Schiff of California, the top Democrat on the House Intelligence Committee, complained, “Those who attack the dossier and Christopher Steele would like you to believe that if they can discredit the dossier, then you should ignore everything else that we’ve learned,” even while insisting, “A lot of it has turned out to be true.” Yet this week, the Senate Intelligence Committee’s top Democrat told POLITICO, “little of that dossier has either been fully proven or conversely, disproven.”

[Read on …]

BooMan archives:

First mention of billionaire Paul Singer funding elite Republican candidate / political issue here @BooMan (2007):

Big Giuliani backer behind the failed CA electoral initiative also posted @dKos

Furthermore, it was Guccifer who hacked the Blumenthal email correspondence as early as 2013 that revealed HRC’s private server … Hacking was easy, prison is hard.

This Is Hillary Clinton’s Secret Email: HDR22@ClintonEmail.com

Clinton’s email address was hdr22@clintonemail.com; the handle seems to refer to her maiden initials (she was born as Hillary Diane Rodham). The notorious hacker Guccifer first revealed the email address in March 2013, after he gained access to the AOL account of former Clinton White House staffer Sidney Blumenthal, and sent screenshots of Blumenthal’s inbox to several news outlets. According to those screenshots, Blumenthal was regularly sending Clinton what appeared to be freelance intelligence reports–including information and advice about the 2012 attacks in Benghazi, Libya–all of which clearly fell under the rubric of official State Department business.

DNC Server Intrusion and Unswered Questions

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