17 November, 2021

Ha! What a Funny Question!

Erik Wemple: Are the sites who reported false information about the Steele dossier going to correct the record? – HotAir

No, of course not. They knew it was false at the time. Truth wasn’t the purpose. Harming Trump was the purpose and it served its purpose admirably.

Erik Wemple has really done an exemplary job of holding onto the receipts for all the media’s sunny claims about the Steele dossier. With the recent indictment of Igor Danchenko, Wemple is once again pointing out that the people who hyped the document don’t seem nearly as eager to correct the record. His article today covers some of the same ground I covered here, such as the fact that one of Steele’s sources turned out to be a Democratic strategist at a PR firm named Charles Dolan Jr. But Wemple also points to another one of Steele’s alleged sources, a man named Sergei Millian.

Danchenko never spoke to Millian. Danchenko apparently fabricated the claims of a phone call. So given that the previous stories and the indictment can’t both be correct, Wemple asks all three outlets that published those previous stories the obvious question: Will the stories be corrected/retracted? None of the sites, not even his own, would answer the question:

The Wall Street Journal on Friday published a story noting that the indictment contradicted the newspaper’s original reporting on Millian. “We will continue to follow the Danchenko case closely and report updates as they develop,” a Journal spokesperson said in a statement. We asked the Journal if it intended to add an editor’s note/correction/retraction to the January 2017 story. A spokesperson declined to elaborate.

Read the whole thing. I can’t do it justice in quoting. The point is that many of the most “explosive” of the Russia stories have now been shown to be unequivocally false. The news organizations must retract these stories, if they have any kind of ethics.

They won’t. But they should.

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