by WorldTribune Staff, November 22, 2017
FBI and Department of Justice officials indicated they are not able to verify the charges of collusion between the Russian government and Trump campaign made in the dossier compiled by ex-British spy Christopher Steele, Washington Examiner columnist Byron York said, citing sources familiar with the matter.
The FBI and DOJ made the admission in recent days “in face-to-face briefings with congressional staff,” York wrote on Nov. 19.
“The FBI received the first installment of the dossier in July 2016. It received later installments as they were written at the height of the presidential campaign, which means the bureau has had more than a year to investigate the allegations in the document,” York noted.
The dossier was financed by the Hillary Clinton campaign.
The House Intelligence Committee in August issued a subpoena to the FBI and DOJ seeking information on the bureau’s efforts to validate the dossier. The subpoena demanded “any documents, if they exist, that memorialize DOJ and/or FBI efforts to corroborate, validate, or evaluate information provided by Mr. Steele and/or sub-sources and/or contained in the ‘Trump Dossier.’ ”
York noted that, according to the sources familiar with the matter, “neither the FBI nor the Justice Department has provided documents in response to that part of the committee’s subpoena.”
That news appears to contradict recent statements from some top Democrats. “A lot of it has turned out to be true,” Rep. Adam Schiff, ranking Democrat on the House Intelligence Committee, told the Wall Street Journal last week.
“The biggest thing that I think people need to realize about the dossier is that Christopher Steele discovered that the Russians were embarked on a broad effort to help the Trump campaign before our own intelligence agencies came to the same conclusion,” Schiff told the Journal. “In the broadest outline of what he investigated, he proved more than prescience — he proved accurate in terms of the Russian involvement and what their motivations were.”
The most important thing about the dossier, Schiff said, is that Steele discovered the Russian “broad effort” to influence the election before U.S. intelligence agencies did. Steele was accurate “in the broadest outline of what he did,” Schiff claimed, which was reporting “Russian involvement” and “what [Russian] motivations were.”
York wrote: “That’s fine, as far as it goes – after all, investigators unanimously agree that Russia tried to influence the election – but what about the Trump campaign? What about all those specific allegations of coordination between Team Trump and the Russians? Those were the most explosive parts of the dossier. And they remain unverified.”