The curious case of Mr. Downer

Kim Strassel’s weekly Wall Street Journal column looks into “The curious case of Alexander Downer.” Downer is the former Australian ambassador to the United Kingdom whose conversation with George Papadopoulos in London supposedly led to the counterintelligence investigation that culminated in the appointment of Robert Mueller as Special Counsel to torment President Trump. Downer thus lies at the heart of one of the origin stories — perhaps the key origin story — of the synthetic Trump-Russia collusion hysteria.

Strassel isn’t buying the story. She concludes:

For months we’ve been told the FBI acted because it was alarmed that Mr. Papadopoulos knew about those hacked Democratic emails in May, before they became public in June. But according to the tipster himself, Mr. Papadopoulos said nothing about emails. The FBI instead received a report that a far-removed campaign adviser, over drinks, said the Russians had something that might be “damaging” to Hillary. Did this vague statement justify a counterintelligence probe into a presidential campaign, featuring a spy and secret surveillance warrants?

Unlikely. Which leads us back to what did inspire the FBI to act, and when? The Papadopoulos pretext is getting thinner.

We are swimming in lies, in falsity, in deceit. This is really getting old.

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