I’ve thought from the second I learn the Steele/Trump file produced within the service of the Clinton presidential marketing campaign that, assuming it’s what it purports to be, it’s extremely more likely to represent Russian disinformation. Today the Wall Street Journal turns to retired CIA station chief Daniel Hoffman who served within the former Soviet Union for his opinion. Hoffman makes the case that “The Steele dossier fits the Kremlin playbook” (behind the Journal’s paywall). Hoffman distinguishes between “a partisan ploy” and “a Russian espionage disinformation plan,” however on this case they appear to overlap.
In any occasion, Hoffman argues that “the dossier was part of a Russian espionage disinformation plot targeting both parties and America’s political process. This is what seems most likely to me, having spent much of my 30-year government career, including with the CIA, observing Soviet and then Russian intelligence operations.” He makes three factors in help of his argument:
There are three causes the Kremlin would have detected Mr. Steele’s data gathering and seen a possibility to intervene. First, Mr. Steele didn’t journey to Russia to amass his data and as a substitute relied on intermediaries. That is a weak hyperlink, since Russia’s inner police service, the FSB, devotes vital technical and human sources to blanket surveillance of Western non-public residents and authorities officers, with a selected concentrate on uncovering their Russian contacts.
Second, Mr. Steele was an particularly doubtless goal for such surveillance provided that he had retired from MI-6, the British spy company, after serving in Moscow. Russians are fond of claiming that there isn’t any such factor as a “former” intelligence officer. The FSB would have had its eye on him.
Third, the Kremlin efficiently hacked into the Democratic National Committee. Emails there may have tipped it off that the Clinton marketing campaign was accumulating data on Mr. Trump’s dealings in Russia.
Hoffman doesn’t even take up Steele’s disclaimer concerning the substance of the file memos within the British defamation lawsuit or Glenn Simpson’s ludicrous tributes to Simpson’s divine energy to intuit the bona fides of his informants. Hoffman doesn’t take up the efforts of Steele and Simpson to position the file within the arms of the FBI and disseminate it through the Democrats’ media adjunct. It is tough to consider that the Clinton marketing campaign was an unwitting instrument of Putin and the Russians. When Clinton’s pursuits coincided with Putin’s, Hillary Clinton hesitated not for a second to proceed along with his handiwork, if that’s what it’s.