John Cassidy reviews the transcript of Glenn Simpson’s interview with the Senate Judiciary Committee staff for readers of the New Yorker in “The Digger Who Commissioned the Trump-Russia Dossier Speaks.” As one might infer from the headline’s reference to Simpson as “the digger,” Cassidy takes Simpson’s account of himself at face value. Cassidy gives no hint of the anomalies, peculiarities, and inanities in Simpson’s testimony.
Power Line readers may want to contrast Cassidy’s narrative account of Simpson’s testimony with John’s notes on it here and with mine here and here. I found the contrast interesting. Hey, maybe we’re too cynical.
In Cassidy’s telling, unless I have missed something, Simpson’s work for Prevezon and Simpson’s close encounters with the infamous Natalia Veselnitskaya disappear. When Cassidy comes to the Trump/Steele dossier, he writes: “In any case, when Steele sent in his first memorandum, which was thirty-five pages long and dated June 20, 2016, it contained some explosive allegations…”
For me, the clock strikes thirteen here. Cassidy writes in a knowing tone, but he must never have viewed the dossier with his own eyes. The June 20 memo is in fact three pages long. The entire dossier itself is 35 pages long (below). I have previously posted the dossier here two or three times so that readers can see themselves how dodgy the whole thing is.
UPDATE: Our take on Simpson’s testimony places us in the good company of the Wall Street Journal’s Kim Strassel: “Mr. Simpson extols his journalistic chops, praises the integrity of dossier author Christopher Steele (a ‘Boy Scout’), professes his love of country and his distaste for Russians (other than those paying him), and ladles on more disinformation about Mr. Trump. Democrats and the media have spun this into a new contention: What mattered were the motives and credentials of the dossier’s creators, which were sufficient to give the FBI good cause to run with the document.”
Kim also has a few questions of her own for Simpson: “If Mr. Steele was such a professional, why was he out spreading national-security ‘intelligence’ through the media? If Mr. Simpson was so worried for his country, why did he spend months dodging congressional requests for testimony, and refuse to name his client? If Mr. Steele was confident enough in his document to spool it to the FBI, why has he ducked every congressional request that he explain his work?”
MORE: And the cynicism of Lee Smith knows no bounds.