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Mark Schoofs, Investigations and Projects Editor at Buzzfeed (Twitter page), appears to have uploaded to “Document Cloud” the Christopher Steele report on President Elect Trump:

Company Intelligence Report 2016/080US Presidential Election: Republican Candidate Donald Trump’s Activities in Russia and Compromising Relationship with the Kremlin

Of note cogent to the ever philosophical BackChannels: this wrap in the first point:

Source C, a senior Russian financial official said the TRUMP operation should be seen in terms of PUTIN’s desire to return to Nineteenth Century ‘Great Power’ politics anchored upon countries interests rather than the ideals-based international order established after World War Two.  S/he had overheard PUTIN talking in this way to close associates on several occasions.

The “Great Power politics” noted would seem to jive with BackChannels assertions about “Medieval Political Absolutism” vs “Modern Democratic and Checked Distributions of Political Power.”

Additional Reference

The US intelligence community has made no determination as of yet on the contents, but has deemed the documents sufficiently credible to warrant further investigation and included a summary of the dossier in briefing materials for both President Obama and President-elect Trump. It is worth noting that these leaders are all career professionals, including two non-political appointees, FBI Director James Comey and NSA Director Mike Rogers, who have zero incentive to pick a fight with their future boss.

The author, former British intelligence Russia expert Chris Steele, is a highly regarded and experienced professional known for his integrity and professionalism; not the kind of guy to invent stuff out of thin air.

Dowling, Nick.  “Is the Christopher Steele dossier fake news?”  CNN, January 17, 2017.

Updated Reference – From January 25, 2017

The assertion that he was the source of the document’s unsubstantiated (and refuted) claims about a Russian government videotape of Trump in a compromising position was first reported online Tuesday by The Wall Street Journal. The Journal quoted Millian saying in an email that the information in the dossier was “fake news (created by sick minds)” and was “an attempt to distract the future president from real work.”

Ross, Brian and Matthew Mosk.  “US-Russian Businessman Said to Be Source of Key Trump Dossier Claims.”  ABC News, January 24, 2017.

Related on BackChannels

Note: datelines appear embedded in the URLs cited.



Additional Comment

Americans have been told that there are such things as “Alternative Facts” or that we are living in a “Post-Fact World”.

Neither claim is true.

While there are limits to what journalists may discover — especially online! — there are in the foundations of our political and social realities such things as plain facts.  We may dress up the same observed and measured as “factual data”.  However, where disingenuous and partisan communications fill media and public memory, it becomes the reader’s responsibility, in part, to challenge information with what critical research skills may be mustered for the task.

On the topic of throwback Soviet-style “kompromat”, BackChannels has chosen to present sources that are themselves querying the topic.  Ultimately, Americans must rely on the integrity and investigating prowess of their intelligence services.

I believe the following block presents the oath taken by those who have chosen to engage directly in the defense of the United States of America.

The wordings of the current oath of enlistment and oath for commissioned officers are as follows:

“I, _____, do solemnly swear (or affirm) that I will support and defend the Constitution of the United States against all enemies, foreign and domestic; that I will bear true faith and allegiance to the same; and that I will obey the orders of the President of the United States and the orders of the officers appointed over me, according to regulations and the Uniform Code of Military Justice. So help me God.” (Title 10, US Code; Act of 5 May 1960 replacing the wording first adopted in 1789, with amendment effective 5 October 1962).

“I, _____ (SSAN), having been appointed an officer in the Army of the United States, as indicated above in the grade of _____ do solemnly swear (or affirm) that I will support and defend the Constitution of the United States against all enemies, foreign and domestic, that I will bear true faith and allegiance to the same; that I take this obligation freely, without any mental reservation or purpose of evasion; and that I will well and faithfully discharge the duties of the office upon which I am about to enter; So help me God.” (DA Form 71, 1 August 1959, for officers.)


The above represents all that may stand between the existence of America’s classically liberal democracy and the many predictably capricious, willful, and violent forms of politically absolute autocracy.