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Can someone explain this Trump dossier please?

(10 Posts)
noblegiraffe Sat 14-Jan-17 15:26:33

I kind of ignored this when it first came out because it was shouted down as 'fake news' and I assumed it was some sort of fabricated sex scandal.

Then it kept hanging around. Russia said they didn't collect this sort of information (which is obviously not true!) so I thought Russia were behind it.

Then it seems like British Intelligence are behind it? And it's a dossier of evidence? Theresa May has had to distance the government from it?

I've tried to read the latest news stories but it's like starting watching a film halfway through.

Please could someone explain what's in it, whether it's true, where
Russia comes in and whether this could affect the presidency?

TheBathroomSink Sat 14-Jan-17 16:59:20

The New York Times has a good summary of it here which is fairly unsensational.

It seems to be some videotapes, the activities on which are described in the dossier, and evidence of payments from Russia to groups supporting the Trump campaign, which isn't allowed under US law.

No-one can say for sure if it is true, as most of it seems to be based on things Russian spies have told other people to tell the ex-MI6 guy. Short of someone getting hold of the tapes in question (it looks like there are at least two) or finding a list of the people in Russia who hold loans on Trump's properties, it's only ever going to be conjecture, because as soon as the tapes are made public (if they exist), they lose the power to influence.

The UK Government have only said that the ex-MI6 guy was not employed by them and hadn't been for some time. I suppose May had to say something, and there isn't really anything else she could say.

So, effectively, the 'dirt' was collected by Russia, but the dossier was created by an ex-MI6 guy for the Americans, based on stuff he was told by people he knew in Russia when he worked for MI6, after he was asked by the Americans to find out if there was dirt!

As to whether they influence the presidency, who knows? At the moment, it looks like everything influences him, he seems to have the attention span of a gnat. I'm still not entirely convinced his kids haven't told him this is a new TV series he's part of.

Itwasthenandstillis Sat 14-Jan-17 19:07:06

The British government are distancing themselves because they have to maintain a good relationship with Trump (or at least the US).

languagelearner Sun 15-Jan-17 07:18:16

I read about it too, it's spread all over the globe, to Sweden too, where I've read it in one daily paper quoting the reputable source "the Sun" by all accounts, and another daily morning paper threw in a picture of the alleged office with a photo of the address plaque; it says Grosvenor Gardens Mews.

I remember Grosvenor Gardens from the hop-on-hop-off tour I took as a tourist in London, ages ago, and the red buses pass by really close. It seems a very posh area. Expensive.

I also ignored this story and for me it's not even like starting watching a film halfway through, rather to get into the cinema and just watch the end titles and then leave again.

For me, I wrote it all off as 'syndicate work', a word I learned in the 1990's when I read a brochure from an organisation giving lessons and classes in 'syndicate work', and I looked up the word in a dictionary. I remember it because of the effort it took to look it up in my dictionary. I think 'syndicate work' is when an organisation write up some stories and drop them simultaneously to the press, in multiple ways, on multiple channels, in order to form people's opinions. confused

noblegiraffe Sun 15-Jan-17 21:50:30

Thanks for the nytimes link, it's detailed but I'm confused because it seems to be boring stuff about business deals but I'd heard about salacious stuff with prostitutes.

Is anyone investigating whether it's true? Officially? I'm sure there are plenty of people looking into it unofficially!

SanFranBear Sun 15-Jan-17 21:56:21

Apparently, there is video footage of DT frolicking in a hotel with prostitutes who performed a golden shower for him as the Obama's had slept in the same bed on their previous visits.

I probably read too much spy fiction and thrillers but it doesn't sound as far fetched as perhaps it should..

As TheBathroomSink said though, it's really only rumour and conjecture at this point although it hasn't stopped the MI6 gent from going into hiding with his family. Can't say I blame him

meditrina Sun 15-Jan-17 22:04:31

It's got sod all to do with the British government.

Two intelligence officers form a private risk anaysis company after they leave MI6. There are dozens of this sort of security/intelligence/military company - it's a really well trodden track. This one seems to have had HQ in Belgravia, so probably doing quite well. Website fairly uni formative (again, not unusual).

Dossier is available on Buzzfeed. Not clear who the client or clients were (ie who commissioned the reporting, where the reports were sent). nor clear how reliable the sources A-E mentioned in the various reports are, so although these reports seem to have been doing the rounds for a little while in USA no-one printed them because they are unverifiable by the press.

I should imagine the Russian government will be very interested in working out who A-E are, the UK government in establishing if any of this impinges on actual Mi6 work, and the USA stuck trying to work out which if any parts if the dossier are important, and why this document existed in the first place.

Firms like this don't write reports and send them out on spec. They dig around for information they know will sell. Who commissioned it, or expressed an interest in it, the first place?

SoFedUpOfPeople Mon 16-Jan-17 01:13:52

That New York Times thread is interesting.

languagelearner Mon 16-Jan-17 04:46:17

"Is anyone investigating whether it's true?" Well, probably, I hope. Some reporter just said over the radio (Swedish radio, program 1, "the news") that the story is continuing today, Trum p has made some statement overnight. I have the radio on in the background while having my breakfast, while leisurely surfing mumsnet for entertainment. It's 5.45 a.m. here now.

TheBathroomSink Mon 16-Jan-17 07:40:39

Apparently it was one of the PACs supporting Jeb Bush which contracted a US firm to do opposition research. The US firm subbed out the Russian part of it to the ex-MI6 guys because they had better contacts.

Once it became clear Jeb Bush was not going to be needing the reports, they were sold to the Clinton campaign.

The sex stuff is in the Buzzfeed details, and probably someone will turn up with the tape at some point. The financial stuff is more important but harder to pin down.

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