The New York Post has a new article relating to their very own coverage of the Hunter Biden laptop scandal. According to The Post, “the ex-CIA chief who wrote the letter signed by 51 former intelligence officials attempting to discredit The Post’s report on Hunter Biden’s infamous laptop told another former to intelligence official that he was drafting it as a “talking point” for Joe Biden to use during a debate with President Donald Trump.”
The ex-CIA chief in question is Michael Morell, who sent an email to another former CIA chief, John Brennan, in October of 2020 stating that Morell wanted to give Biden’s 2020 presidential campaign a little extra info to “push back on Trump.”
In the email, Morell was urging Brennan to sign the letter that Morell had written. “Can I add your name to this list?” Morell asked. “Trying to give the campaign, particularly during the debate on [Oct. 22, 2020], a talking point to push back on Trump on this issue.”
The email also included a list of people Morell was working to recruit as signees. “Will be adding Leon, Sue Gordon, Jeh Johnson, George, Lisa Monaco, and Mike Rogers (DIRNSA) today. And working on adding Dan Coats, Mike Rogers (HPSCI) and Tom Bossert.”
Brennan replied “Ok, Michael, add my name to the list. Good initiative. Thanks for asking me to sign on.”
Not everyone signed the letter, of course. Daniel Hoffman, the CIA’s former Moscow station chief, told Fox News that he declined signing the letter because there was “no evidence” of Russian involvement in the Biden laptop scandal.
“It was not up to us to speculate,” Hoffman said. “So I didn’t sign the letter. I typically don’t put my name to other people’s words.”
The New York Post is justified in their indignation
The Post has good reason to be irritated; they broke a legitimate story – that Hunter Biden’s laptop, which had been abandoned at a Delaware computer shop, revealed emails implicating then-presidential candidate Joe Biden in corruption. The story was quickly dismissed, however, as being a product of Russian disinformation. The mainstream media – and the intelligence community (as represented in Morell’s letter) – banded together to denounce the laptop story.
But the story was real. It wasn’t Russian disinformation at all. Hunter Biden’s laptop had been abandoned at a Delaware computer shop, and the laptop’s emails were recovered. How significant the emails were, whether they really implicated Joe Biden in corruption or not, isn’t the point, as the meaning of significance is debatable. What’s not debatable is that the computer and the emails were authentic.
That such powerful entities collaborated to convince the public, weeks before a presidential election, that the story was a lie is the most concerning element of this whole thing. Ironically, the effort to dismiss the laptop story as disinformation was itself disinformation. And disinformation is of course what the left has been decrying for years as a corrosive agent nibbling at the edges of democracy.
What The Post disinformation scandal demonstrates is that information and truth is malleable and that both sides seem willing to manipulate the facts and the optics surrounding the facts to meet their own political needs. And I don’t mean for that to come off as a Don’t Trust the Media or a Don’t Trust the Government sort of message. But just bear in mind that no one has a monopoly on the truth.
Harrison Kass is the Senior Editor at 19FortyFive. An attorney, pilot, guitarist, and minor pro hockey player, Harrison joined the US Air Force as a Pilot Trainee but was medically discharged. Harrison holds a BA from Lake Forest College, a JD from the University of Oregon, and an MA from New York University. Harrison listens to Dokken.