Washington Free Beacon Lies About Its Role in Trump Dossier
Washington Free Beacon (WFB) is in the news today after a Congressional leak revealed the online far-right media outlet had been the client who first hired Fusion GPS to develop opposition research on then-presidential candidate, Donald Trump. There are many oddities about this entire episode. First is that the Free Beacon, funded by pro-Israel hedge fund billionaire, Paul Singer, lied in its own reporting about who first hired Fusion. According to the Washington Post, the neocon publication reported as late as October 24th (last Tuesday) that the original client was an “unknown GOP client” (see screenshot). Meanwhile, four days later it testified to a House committee that it was the client. Which raises the age-old Beltway Congressional question: what did the editors know, when did they know it, and who did they tell? Further, why didn’t an editor correct this lie before it saw the light of day?
Not to mention, that the article it published attempted to draw attention to the Clinton campaign’s role in continuing to fund Fusion’s work after Singer and WFB dropped out (when Trump won the Republican nomination). In doing so, it deliberately sought to divert attention from the original GOP client, itself. This is outright journalistic malpractice.
The Free Beacon has very little credibility in Washington aside from within far-right circles, but can it retain any after such a journalistic debacle? The answer undoubtedly will be a resounding yes because Paul Singer has deep pockets and clearly had no scruples about hiring Fusion and concealing his involvement. So why would he blush and abandon his pet journalism project because of a “minor peccadillo?”
I’ve spent 20 years as a journalist & never,ever heard of a media outlet hiring an outside firm to do oppo research https://t.co/BzcN1Vr6LE
— Chris Hayes (@chrislhayes) October 27, 2017
Free Beacon editor, Matthew Continetti and chairman, Michael Goldfarb released a statement that this wasn’t the first time it had hired a consultant to do oppo-research on political candidates and other targets/victims of the publication’s ire. As genuine journalist, Chris Hayes tweeted earlier today, he’d never heard of any media outlet ever doing so. After all, isn’t that why you have investigative reporters? They’re supposed to investigate whatever subject the editors deem newsworthy. Why would you need to hire cloak and dagger investigators if you had decent reporters of your own?
The clear import of all this is that the DC scandal sheet isn’t a news outlet. It’s an ideological hit-man targeting the pet peeves of Paul Singer and his editors.
Paul Singer, Major Pro-Israel Funder
Besides being one of the single largest donors to the Republican Party, Singer is also a far-right supporter of Likud politics. He is on the board of Commentary Magazine, the quintessential neocon publication. Irving Kristol, Bill Kristol’s father and the figure who first coined the term, was a regular contributor. John Podhoretz’s father, Norman, was Commentary’s editor for decades.
The hedge fund billionaire also supports the Friends of the IDF, which raises funds on behalf of an Israeli army accused of perpetrating war crimes in Lebanon and Gaza. Singer is a board member of the Republican Jewish Coalition. He has also funded MEMRI, the Islamophobic translation service dedicated to finding and mistranslating Arabic media in order the prove it is anti-Semitic and anti-Israel. He is one of the two largest donors to Josh Block’s The Israel Project. All of these are hard-right Israel Lobby projects promoting advocacy of intolerant, racist policies of the Israeli government.
The Forward profiled him:
Singer…has been a longtime supporter of hawkish pro-Israel causes and is one of the major funders of the conservative think tank Foundation for Defense of Democracies. During the debate over the Iranian nuclear deal, Singer used his fortune to support opponents of the agreement, including by founding an anti-deal Christian group.
Singer also sought to promote Christian support for Israel by signing on to partner with a fundamentalist Christian billionaire to launch a Birthright-like initiative aimed at evangelical students who want to visit Israel.
Billionaire Boys Club and Their Pro-Israel Media Toys
No one in the media has yet noted a theme among pro-Israel billionaires like Singer: they aren’t satisfied merely giving away their money to support Israel. They want to spread their ideological beliefs widely, publicly and aggressively. That’s why Singer created WFB, Sheldon Adelson, who pioneered this strategy, owns Israel HaYom and several other Israeli media outlets, while Seth Klarman founded and continues to fund the Times of Israel. It has published outright fraudulent blog posts and been forced to retract embarrassingly racist screeds published by Israeli writers.
These papers don’t need a conventional media business model. They will survive as long as their primary funder retains a motivation to fund them. That’s while conventional journalism is at such a supreme disadvantage.
The media property that comes closest to being a real newspaper is Israel HaYom. That’s because Adelson hired genuine Israeli newspaper editors to run it. It’s still what’s known in Yiddish as a shmatteh (“rag”). Little more than a tabloid pimping for Bibi Netanyahu and his ultra-nationalist priorities.
There used to be an independent Jewish media here in the U.S. One that reported about Israel without fear or favor. But the last real representative of this, the Jewish Forward, is in dire financial straits and has abandoned its efforts to produce investigative, deeply-reported journalism. What’s left is scandal sheets like the ones I mentioned above, which do little more than publish press releases offered to them by their political allies in government.
These outlets, with their deep-pocketed Likudist funders, will be the last man standing in far-right Jewish journalism. Their fat-cat founders hope that this will succeed, where many other efforts have failed, to turn American Jews into Republicans and Likudists. It would be a shame and a tragedy of major dimensions if they succeeded.
Free Beacon’s Anti-Semitism-Obsessive Adam Kredo
The WFB’s special pro-Israel attack dog is Adam Kredo. He harbors an obsession with anti-Semitism. One might even call it an obsessive compulsive disorder. He of course conflates hatred of Jews with anti-Zionism or even any criticism of Israel. If you review this Google search, you’ll find scores of article with headlines accusing politicians and publications of anti-Semitism or being anti-Israel; when at most they’ve voiced criticism of Israel.
He is a sort of mini-me to his boss, chairman Michael Goldfarb who, whenever a WFB article is proven to mendacious or when unethical methods were used in a report, claims they were meant as a joke:
In a February 2013 post, the blog ran a story under the headline “Hughes Drops Jews,” which suggested that the president of The New Republic magazine was “signal[ing] the publication’s continued drift away from a staunchly pro-Israel standpoint” by dropping “at least five prominent Jewish writers from its masthead.” Critics pointed out that the publication’s editor was Jewish and that half of the writers dropped were not. Goldfarb told the Times that story was meant to be a joke. “We’re true believers, but we’re also troublemakers,” he said, “We get up every day and say, how do we cause trouble?”
…Recalling the Beacon’s repeated insinuations that Chuck Hagel [who’d been nominated to be Obama’s secretary of defense] held anti-Semitic views, the blogger mused: “Goldfarb concedes here that his group’s accusations of anti-Semitism are just for laughs.”
Apparently, not enough people in Washington have gotten the joke. They continue to take this piece of dreck publication seriously, when it should be used for virtual toilet paper.
6 thoughts on “Washington Free Beacon Lies About Its Role in Trump Dossier – Tikun Olam תיקון עולם إصلاح العالم”
Comments are published at the sole discretion of the owner.
Rep. Marco Rubio was Paul Singer’s choice for the Republican nomination, and Free Beacon used Fusion GPS to dig up dirt on ALL OTHER Republican presidential candidates.
The salacious information in the ‘Steele Dossier’ was not accumulated for Free Beacon or Singer.
“The Free Beacon said its research ended before Fusion GPS hired a former British intelligence officer, Christopher Steele, to produce a series of reports alleging links between Russia and those close to Trump. That occurred after the firm was retained by a lawyer for Hillary Clinton’s presidential campaign and the Democratic National Committee”
“None of the work product that the Free Beacon received appears in the Steele dossier,’’ said the statement from Free Beacon”–from the Washington Post.
Richard. You are painting in broad strokes only in order to smear Israel.
No, Singer was an Anyone-but-Trumper. He knew Trump was the leading nominee and hired Fusion to dig up dirt on Trump. Singer didn’t care whether the other GOP candidates won since they were mainstream Republicans…what Singer is. He could’ve lived with any one of them. It was only Trump who threatened Singer and that’s who Fusion dug up dirt on. Further, I have heard of no other information, reports or dirt dug up on any other GOP candidate in the race. Because Fusion didn’t do it.
The claim is being made by the Free Bacon, whose credibility is non-existent. I have no way of verifying that as true. Until it is verified no claims like this should be credited. But even if true, what do you think Fusion was doing when it was compiling dirt on Trump while Singer was its client? Do you think they were compiling records of his attendance at Boy Scout den meetings? Of course they were seeking the dirtiest dirt they could find. And find it I’m sure they did.
And everything in your comment has nothing to do with Israel. Nor is my post a criticism of “Israel.” It’s a criticism of U.S. billionaire fatcats who are buying up Jewish/Israeli media here & in Israel in order to “purify” American Jews and Israel ideologically.
” Singer didn’t care whether the other GOP candidates won since they were mainstream Republicans”
“The Free Beacon, funded in large part by the New York hedge fund billionaire Paul Singer, hired the firm, Fusion GPS, in 2015 to unearth damaging information about several Republican presidential candidates, including Mr. Trump. –New York Times
@ Zionauts: As always with you hasbaperators who think you’re going to pull a fast one over on the rest of us, you have to review your sources to see what you left out. And of course you left out of your quote of your own source all the material that rebuts your claim:
In other words, Fusion WAS doing oppo research against Trump until May 2016, just before he won the nomination. And Singer’s goal even after his own candidate dropped out of the race was to find dirt to use against Trump. He could care less about the other candidates, as I wrote, because he knew they were unlikely to win & because they were more acceptable to him. Therefore, the notion that Singer wasn’t directing his attacks and Fusion’s against Trump directly & specifically is nonsense. Singer knew well before Trump won the nomination that Trump was the man to beat. And Singer was, as I already said, an Anyone-But-Trump Republican. In order to buy his way into Trump’s good graces the price was a $1-million gift for Trump’s inauguration party.
You are done in this thread.
Whilst ostensibly one can construe and/or conflate such conclusions from the evidence cited, this article runs dangerously close to the conspiratorial antisemitic psychoses of the “Jews are running the media’ slurs.
Regarding MEMRI, they exist (as far as I am aware) to translate the more provocative and inflammatory materials existing on the media in Arabic (and not to review and summarize the multitude of views in Arabic-language media).
In the same way, I understand the focus of your blog to criticise some of the heinous excesses and lesser-reported policies of Israel.
One simply needs rudimentary Arabic to attest to the accuracy of some of the incendiary statements [translated]— and again we can’t “throw the baby out with the bathwater” simply because some of their policy and translations are following a certain policy guideline and/or do not fit with our weltanschauung.
Just as it would be incorrect to call you (although I am sure you have been) a self-hating Jew, the argument of MEMRI being “islamophobic” is stretching it a little too much.
You just broke a cardinal comment rule. NO ONE accuses me ever of being anti-Semitic. NEVER. That includes calling what I write anti-Semitic or even insinuating that they are or may be. That’s a red line you cross at your peril. And if you do you’re moderated or banned. Don’t ever write anything else remotely close to this again or I will ban you in a heartbeat. If you ever violate the comment rules again in any way you are in jeopardy. I don’t give second chances.
There is nothing remotely close to your claim about “Jews running the media” in this post. In fact, I argue that billionaire pro-Israel Wall Street hedge fund managers and one gambling mogul have monopolized the JEWISH media, not the general interest media. Further, every major Israeli media outlet not owned by Adelson has already complained of his monopoly. So the notion that my complaint about Adelson owning the Israel media is anti-Semitic is beyond preposterous. How does the claim that a Jew has a monopoly over the Israel Jewish press, become anti-Semitic? Not to mention my quarrel isn’t with their religious affiliation, it’s with their ideology. So once again, if you want to conflate their Zionist politics with their religion, I won’t let you do it since they have NOTHING to do with each other.
No, that’s not their mission. Their mission is to find media material about which they can lie and which they can mistranslate because they’re either liars and don’t care what the original source actually wrote in Arabic, or because they’re inept Arabic translators (take your pick).
And that is precisely the problem: if you have rudimentary mastery of Arabic you will publish translations that are inept or simply wrong. Which is what MEMRI consistently does. You cannot translate a language unless you know it well. MEMRI’s translators do not know it well. I’ve posted a link here in the past to Brian Whitaker’s brilliant critique of MEMRI published in the Guardian. You should read it.
THis issue is a sore point for me because I have taken years to study many languages including French, German, Yiddish and Hebrew (the one I know best). And even Hebrew, which I know relatively well, I take great pains to translate carefully. I often consult with native speakers on phrases which I’m not sure about. Even at that, I make minor errors in translation. And I know Hebrew far better than those jackasses know Arabic. So you can’t fool around when it comes to translation. YOu have to take it very seriously. And they don’t.
Further, MEMRI just destroyed the career of a Canadian imam by mistranslating a sermon he delivered. A reporter convened a panel of five expert translators who documented the multiple errors and deliberate distortions in the MEMRI translation of his sermon. Not to mention that they discovered that MEMRI deliberately re-edited the footage so that the comments he made at two different points in the sermon are merged to negative effect (in terms of creating a false image of an incendiary sermon).
That is MEMRI. And you, for defending their fraud are as much a fraud yourself.
Mistranslation cannot be a policy guideline for a non profit whose mission is to translate media materials. And as for my weltanschauung, it has nothing to do with it. You either translate accurately or you don’t. That’s not a matter of ideology.
You are done in this thread.