The leftist media and rabid anti-Trump lawmakers like Rep. Ted Lieu (D-CA), are salivating on social media after McClatchy reporters Peter Stone and Greg Gordon are back at it, tweeting out a “scoop” by four anonymous sources allegedly placing Michael Cohen in Prague area in late summer 2016. Ben Wieder of McClatchy DC tweeted about the “scoop”:
— Ben Wieder (@benbwieder) December 27, 2018
The Federalist reporter Mollie Hemingway responded to Wieder’s tweet:
This was written by same 2 reporters who “broke” the news last April that Mueller had info on Cohen in Prague. Literally no one has been able to corroborate that April report, which many journos swallowed whole. As with all Russian conspiracy theories, I’ll await actual evidence.
This was written by same 2 reporters who "broke" the news last April that Mueller had info on Cohen in Prague. Literally no one has been able to corroborate that April report, which many journos swallowed whole. As with all Russian conspiracy theories, I'll await actual evidence. https://t.co/ziSbBtVoYL
— Mollie (@MZHemingway) December 27, 2018
Mollie Hemmingway followed up with this tweet:
The hallmark of this & other FusionGPS info op campaigns is they’re difficult to disprove. But you might remember Cohen recently pled guilty to lying to Congress about a Russia topic. He was not charged with anything about Prague and continues to claim he’s never been. FWIW.
Michael Cohen responded to the McClatchy story by saying that he has never been to Prague, adding: “Mueller knows everything!”
Is Cohen saying Mueller has proof he’s never been to Prague?
— Michael Cohen (@MichaelCohen212) December 27, 2018
Fox News’ Sr.Political Analyst, Brit Hume responded to Cohen’s response to the article:
This is an interesting thing for Cohen to be saying after the McClatchy story about his cell phone allegedly being traced to Prague. If Mueller knows everything, and there’s no reason to doubt he does, and Cohen denied the Prague trip under oath, then why no perjury charge?
This is an interesting thing for Cohen to be saying after the McClatchy story about his cell phone allegedly being traced to Prague. If Mueller knows everything, and there’s no reason to doubt he does, and Cohen denied the Prague trip under oath, then why no perjury charge? https://t.co/cXgcaP0pRY
— Brit Hume (@brithume) December 27, 2018
Conservative One America News Network host Jack Posobiec asked McClatchy DC News a very good question about why, if Mueller has evidence that Cohen was in Prague, then why he isn’t prosecuting him for lying to the Senate?
@McClatchyDC, serious question here If Mueller has evidence Cohen was in Prague, why isn’t he prosecuting Cohen for lying to the Senate about it? He was charged with lying to the Senate about Trump Tower Moscow
Posobiec followed up with this tweet, mocking the multiple anonymous sources used in the McClatchy story that has liberals going beserk with hope that they’ve finally got Trump on Russian collusion:
McClatchy’s sourcing for their new Michael Cohen Prague article: Four people spoke with McClatchy on condition of anonymity. Each obtained their information independently from foreign intelligence connections.
Conservative Treehouse was quick to point out that the same McClatchy reporters tried this same stunt only eight months ago.
McClatchy journalists Peter Stone and Greg Gordon are once again attempting to prop up the most disproven allegation in the Chris Steele/Nellie Ohr dossier about Michael Cohen making a trip to Prague. They appear to stir this false story approximately every six months. This iteration is framed around cell-phone tower pings.
Fix This Nation summarizes the April 2018 McClatchy article:
One of the biggest bombshells of the week came late last Friday, courtesy of McClatchy News. According to the report, sources within the Special Counsel’s office confirmed that Robert Mueller possessed evidence that put President Trump’s personal attorney, Michael Cohen, in Prague during the summer of 2016.
Why would that matter? Because, among other things, it would be the first time that the FBI or the Special Counsel has independently verified a major claim from the Steele Dossier. In other words, it would be the left’s first major “Aha, the dossier IS true” moment of this entire sordid investigation, and it would herald a new and potentially dangerous phase of the special counsel’s case against the president.
According to the dossier, Cohen traveled covertly to Prague in August 2016 to meet with top Kremlin aides. The agenda: To find out how to cover the Trump campaign’s tracks vis a vis the hacking of the DNC’s networks. To put it simply, if Mueller has evidence verifying that this meeting took place – after all the denials from Cohen and other members of the Trump campaign – the house of cards begins to fall, and even Trump’s most loyal defenders will have to admit there’s something fishy in the water.
But that’s a big “if.”
It is probably not a coincidence that the special counsel’s office made a rare statement to the media just after the McClatchy report began making the rounds. In it, a spokesman for Robert Mueller warned the press: Don’t believe everything you hear.
Watch Clinton crony and Michael Cohen lawyer, who clearly denies the claim:
The special counsel has reviewed and walked away from the claim. The Washington Post spent months trying to substantiate the claim and could find no evidence.
Conservative Treehouse reports – According to WaPo reporter Greg Miller, the CIA and FBI have refuted the claim. It simply did not happen.
However, that said, the Cohen mistake within the Dossier continues to point toward how the FISA-702 FBI/NSA database was likely exploited by government intelligence ‘contractors’ to extract political opposition research. Their FISA(16)(17) “about” queries of the database simply returned a result of the wrong Michael Cohen.
According to prior research, there was a Michael Cohen in the region; that Cohen is a New York City based art dealer with the same name as Donald Trump’s former lawyer.
Washington Post Greg Miller obliquely noted a reference to the art world when he was explaining how reporters spent months in Praque, and surrounding area, checking through hotel records and asking questions while finding no evidence.
That notation to “artwork” by Greg Miller reflects a melding of the original claim with the mistaken identity of an art dealer named Michael Cohen. It is likely Nellie Ohr, or someone with similar FISA database access, doing similar research, received the wrong result from a FISA(17) “about query” search and passed it along to Christopher Steele who included it within his dossier. As FISC Judge Collyer noted (see above) the non-compliant, unlawful, rate for the database searches were 85%.
It still seems most likely that Nellie Ohr wrote much of the dossier from the research already held by her employer Glenn Simpson at Fusion-GPS, in combination with material extracted from database searches. Christopher Steele was used to launder the opposition research and give it the appearance -and validity- of an intelligence research document.
Mrs. Nellie Ohr refused to answer questions when brought before the joint congressional committee. She invoked ‘Spousal Privilege’.
The FBI did not verify the Ohr/Steele material because they needed a legal justification for already existing surveillance on the Trump campaign. The sketchy Ohr/Steele dossier was used to obtain sketchy FISA warrants on Trump campaign officials; making sketchy surveillance legal through the fraudulent construct of a counterintelligence operation.