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Saturday, April 29, 2017

Reprinted with permission from MediaMatters.

The New York Times has confirmed that Fox News legal analyst Andrew Napolitano sourced his false allegation that former President Barack Obama asked British intelligence to spy on President Donald Trump to a discredited former CIA analyst. This analyst, Larry C. Johnson, floated the conspiracy theory on the Russian state-sponsored news network RT on March 6, the week after Trump’s original accusation that Obama was responsible for an illegal wiretap.

On March 13, Napolitano told hosts of Fox News’ Fox & Friends that Obama circumvented the American intelligence community to ask “the British spying agency” for “transcripts of conversations involving candidate Trump” without “American fingerprints.” Napolitano’s claims were cited by White House press secretary Sean Spicer while defending Trump’s baseless claims that Obama wiretapped Trump Tower during the 2016 presidential election.

On March 14, Media Matters uncovered the link between Napolitano’s claims and an interview Johnson gave to RT. The New York Times confirmed Media Matters’  reporting that Napolitano used Johnson as “one of the sources” for his “claim about British intelligence.” The Times also noted Johnson’s direct involvement in spreading false rumors that video existed of Michelle Obama using a racial slur against white people. From the March 17 article:

Mr. [Andrew] Napolitano’s unlikely leap into global politics can be explained by his friendship with Mr. Trump, whom he met with this year to discuss potential Supreme Court nominees. Mr. Napolitano also has a taste for conspiracy theories, which led him to Larry C. Johnson, a former intelligence officer best known for spreading a hoax about Michelle Obama.

[…]

Mr. Johnson, who was himself once a Fox News contributor, said in a telephone interview that Mr. Napolitano called him on Friday and requested that he speak to The New York Times. Mr. Johnson said he was one of the sources for Mr. Napolitano’s claim about British intelligence.

Mr. Johnson became infamous in political circles after he spread false rumors in 2008 that Michelle Obama had been videotaped using a slur against Caucasians. In the interview on Friday, Mr. Johnson acknowledged his notoriety, but said that his knowledge of surveillance of Mr. Trump came from sources in the American intelligence community. Mr. Napolitano, he said, heard about his information through an intermediary.

IMAGE: Russian President Vladimir Putin (R) sits next to retired U.S. Army Lieutenant General Michael Flynn (L) as they attend a banquet marking the 10th anniversary of RT (Russia Today) television news channel in Moscow, Russia, December 10, 2015. Sputnik/Mikhail Klimentyev/Kremlin via REUTERS

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9 Responses to Report Confirms Fox News’ Napolitano Repeated Russian Media For His British Intelligence Conspiracy Theory

  1. Typical.

    Fox takes a story from the lunatic fringe, or in this case Pravda 2.0, and publishes it.

    Trump references it.

    Fox then demands that the Lamestream Media follow up on the story.

    The Lamestream Media, in its effort “to get both sides” legitimizes the story.

    Thus a scandal is born.

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  2. This is becoming so tiresome.
    The President of the United States commands the best intelligence networks in the world, yet the schlub-in-chief is basing his mass communication tweets on conspiracy theorists and subpar Fox News charlatans?
    Isn’t that like a “surgeon” whose only education is cleaning fish?
    Thank god Angela Merkel came and saw it firsthand.

    • Trump threw his buddies at Fox directly under the bus. He causes chaos wherever he goes and whenever he opens his mouth. His personality disorder is so distracting and exhausting for us and the rest of the world to watch and makes it extremely difficult for anyone to trust him.
      Tiresome is putting mildly!

    • You’re absolutely right, this is becoming tiresome. But that exactly is the plan! The Trump circle of dubious figures wants people to stop asking and listening. That way it will be much easier to for them cover up their questionable foreign relations, business ‘deals’, and scheming to throw the whole planet into disarray.

      • It’s too late to “…stop asking and listening” to Trump and the kleptocracy he promotes. We, the majority of voters in the United States, are outraged, energized, and increasingly organized.
        Too many citizens finally understand how deeply threatening his administration is. It’s not campaign hot air anymore. People are being hurt.

  3. The infatuation with conspiracy theories is quite the rage with Right Wing elements—-why is that?

    Several books have been written on this phenomenon of rumors and conspiracy dissemination—practices that began during the earliest days of America’s history. The allure of conspiracies is that they appeal to human’s natural instinct for wanting to gossip and back-bite, and when there is someone or some group to isolate for demonization, what better way to spread the allegation than to resort to the creation and spread of conspiracies—the truth then becomes objectionable and dismissed as unimportant because it puts cold water of the conspiracy and halts the spread.

    Since the desire to gossip and backbite is such a normal tendency in humans, each Messenger of God had to pinut out the dangers and serious consequences—as we all know, one of the 10 Commandments is “Thou shalt not bear false witness”. This one, Trump, FOX, and Breitbart break daily as part of their amoral regimen; Another is “Thou shalt not covet”, and all through Donald’s life he has coveted the purchase of property, by hook or by crook, and he covets the spotlight; and then there is “Thou shalt not commit adultery”, for which there is at least a lot of circumstantial evidence and claims made by women that Donald regularly engaged in such activities repeatedly.

    In light of these few sordid examples, and so many others which would lead to prolixity, we have a news outlet, FOX, which habitually violate the spirit of the 10 Commandments with impunity, we have a GOP that perpetuates the coveting of land and resources by taking advantage of Native Americans lack of power to resist the the GOP’s lust to take property in order to enrich themselves and Big Oil and Big Business.

    In other words, a collection of satanic entities who pay lip-service to being Christian, yet by their actions they clearly display an anti-Christ attitude. Maybe the Saudi version of Shari`ah may help remind the GOP and FOX NATION of the benefits of at least trying to present an outward appearance of wanting to adhere to spiritual principles.

    • “Then it is evident that in creation and nature evil does not exist at all; but when the natural qualities of man are used in an unlawful way, they are blameworthy. So, if a rich and generous person gives a sum of money to a poor man for his own necessities, and if the poor man spends that sum of money on unlawful things, that will be blameworthy. It is the same with all the natural qualities of man, which constitute the capital of life; if they be used and displayed in an unlawful way, they become blameworthy. Therefore it is clear that creation is purely good.

      Consider that the worst of qualities and most odious of attributes, which is the foundation of all evil, is lying. No worse or more blameworthy quality than this can be imagined to exist; it is the destroyer of all human perfections, and the cause of innumerable vices. There is no worse characteristic than this; it is the foundation of all evils.

      Notwithstanding all this, if a doctor consoles a sick man by saying: “Thank God you are better, and there is hope of your recovery,” though these words are contrary to the truth, yet they may become the consolation of the patient and the turning-point of the illness. This is not blameworthy.”

      (segment from a Tablet by Abdu’l Baha) http://reference.bahai.org/en/t/c/BWF/bwf-30.html

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