On the most recent episode of their podcast, The Drill Down, Peter Schweizer and co-host Eric Eggers set the record straight.
A pair of stories appearing in the New York Times recently revealed that the FBI had contacted Schweizer in 2015 about allegations in his NYT bestselling Clinton Cash: How Foreign Governments Helped Make Bill and Hillary Rich. Of particular interest to the Bureau was the sale of uranium assets to Russia, and any possible connection between that deal and the Clinton Foundation.
The Times attempts to portray Schweizer’s work, and the FBI’s resultant investigations, as partisan efforts. Yet, as Schweizer and Eggers point out, the Times itself corroborated Schweizer’s reporting on the Clinton Foundation with its own 4,000-word front-page story in 2015.
“I’m just frustrated by the manner in which powerful forces try to misrepresent what we have done,” Schweizer says.
Indeed, in its own 2015 blockbuster story, the Times confirmed the basic facts of the Uranium One story GAI had reported, including the deep involvement of then-Secretary of State Hillary Clinton and her family’s charitable foundation, which took large amounts of cash from foreign businesses and governments for its charitable work while having pending business before the Department of State. The Times cited material Schweizer provided to them just prior to the book’s publication. The FBI agents who called Schweizer asked for and were given copies of the corporate records GAI had found in its research.
Unlike much of modern journalism, the work GAI did was all documented and sourced, with no anonymous attributions to “people familiar with the matter.”
On the podcast, Peter remembered that first 2015 contact from the FBI. “So, the FBI calls… They said, ‘Look, we’re interested in the work that you’ve done. Would you be willing to provide information if necessary?’ I said, ‘Sure. This is the mission of GAI.’” GAI provided the FBI with corporate and tax records it had gotten regarding the Clinton Foundation, which revealed undisclosed contributions from the Canadian mining concern that ultimately brokered the Uranium One deal.
“We’re happy to share [the facts] because our mission is not only to tell the world what we found, but hopefully we want some justice on the tail end,” Schweizer says.
The FBI then launched investigations involving four of its field offices, before the 2016 election, Schweizer says.
In his recent report to Congress, Special Counsel John Durham noted that, inside the FBI, efforts to investigate the Clinton Foundation were blocked. Schweizer notes, “The FBI had taped recordings of four nationals talking about how you can give money to the Clintons and they’ll give you favors. There’s lots of evidence beyond the book. [FBI attorney] Lisa Page, she writes about the Clinton investigation in a text to Peter Strzok that said, ‘one more thing, Clinton may be our next president… the last thing you need is going in there loaded for bear.’ She goes on to say, you know, we really shouldn’t be looking at this.”
It’s been established how deeply shaken Hillary Clinton’s campaign was by Schweizer’s reporting. Investigative reporter Jeff Gerth recently wrote a detailed, four-part exposé for the Columbia Journalism Review revealing the Clinton camp’s paranoia at the time. Hillary’s number one vulnerability, internal campaign polling had shown, was the uranium sale to Vladimir Putin’s Russia, Gerth’s long investigative piece shows.
Schweizer picks it up. “And then [Clinton’s] smart political people said, what if it’s actually Trump that has the Russia problem? Exactly. Classic move. You switch your chief vulnerability on your opponent.” This strategy, many observers have concluded, was the reason the Clinton campaign paid to produce the Steele Dossier and then fed its unsubstantiated rumors to the FBI, as the Durham report has now firmly documented.
Citing the Durham Report, Schweizer noted the double standard between how the FBI decided to investigate the allegations of Russia collusion by Trump and its actions regarding the operations of the Bill and Hillary Clinton Foundation. The FBI sprang into action on the Trump case on the strength of the discredited Steele Dossier. The bureau bypassed or ignored its own internal standards for reviewing and corroborating raw intelligence to justify the Trump investigation.
“Think about the Steele Dossier and the way in which the mainstream media outlets were used by the Clinton campaign by leveraging the credibility of the intelligence community to say, ‘here’s this story, here’s what we have.’ And they reported it breathlessly,” Schweizer says.
And now former FBI officials, perhaps the very officials involved in stalling the Clinton investigation, are quoted anonymously by the Times disparaging those inquiries and the solid journalism that instigated them.
“The New York Times and mainstream media is still being used by the intelligence community,” Eggers says. “You would think that elements like The New York Times would realize how they’re being used in this manner, but apparently they don’t.”
To listen to the Drill Down podcast – click here.
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