A Friday report from The Daily Caller spotlighted a newly declassified memo released by the Senate Judiciary Committee that suggested the FBI discovered numerous errors in The New York Times’ 2017 story on Donald Trump’s alleged Russia contacts.
The article in question was written by Mark Mazzetti, Matt Apuzzo, and Michael Schmidt. The piece cited four current and former U.S. representatives who allegedly claimed that American espionage and law enforcement agencies intercepted calls showing Trump allies connecting with Moscow agents in 2015 — the year before the 2016 presidential election.
As noted by The Daily Caller, then-FBI deputy chief of counterintelligence Peter Strzok called the report “inaccurate and misleading as written.”
“We have not seen evidence of any individuals affiliated with the Trump team in contact with [Espionage Officers],” he wrote in a note included in the Friday memo.
Notably, Strzok shot down claims that former Trump campaign chairman Paul Manafort — who is now imprisoned — was determined to be communicating with Kremlin agents. According to Strzok, the bureau was unaware of any such calls at the time.
“Again, we are unaware of ANY Trump advisers engaging in conversations with Russian intelligence officials,” he wrote.
According to The Daily Caller, the memo also revealed that The New York Times’ report falsely reported that Roger Stone was under FBI investigation at the time, which conflicted with the information in the recently released bureau documents.
According to CNN, multiple Trump allies were ultimately shown to have had contact with agents from Russia.
“While the FBI officials took issue with the story alleging that Trump associates had repeated contacts with senior Russian intelligence officials, it is true that multiple members of Trump’s team communicated with Russians, including those tied to Russian intelligence.”
As The Inquisitr reported, Robert Mueller’s investigation claimed that the real estate mogul’s 2016 campaign provided polling data to Russians. Nevertheless, Mueller’s inquiry concluded that Trump did not collude with the Kremlin, and subsequent reports suggested that Christopher Steele’s dossier, which drove the investigation, contained misinformation created by the Kremlin.
The New York Times has found itself at the center of falsehoods before. As reported by The Intercept, the publication recently admitted that certain “key falsehoods” drove last year’s coup in Bolivia that ousted left-wing President Evo Morales. According to the publication, the allegations of fraud outlined by audits by the Organization of American States were “marred by grave irregularities.” Nevertheless, The Intercept claimed that the purported falsehoods in the audits were spread by U.S. media, including The New York Times.