Back during the Hunter Biden laptop saga and the final days of the election, one of the biggest tools the Democrats had in their toolkit for fending off attacks based on Hunter Biden’s apparent corruption was a letter signed by 51 former intelligence operatives claiming that the laptop was really Russian disinformation.
During a debate with then-President Donald Trump, for example, then-candidate Joe Biden used the letter, signed by intelligence apparatchiks like “former CIA directors or acting directors Brennan, Leon Panetta, Gen. Michael Hayden, John McLaughlin and Michael Morell“, to his advantage, using it to question the veracity of the laptop and once again try to connect Trump to Russia.
Politico, reporting on the letter at the time it was released in a story with the headling “Hunter Biden story is Russian disinfo, dozens of former intel officials say”, said:
While the letter’s signatories presented no new evidence, they said their national security experience had made them “deeply suspicious that the Russian government played a significant role in this case” and cited several elements of the story that suggested the Kremlin’s hand at work.
“If we are right,” they added, “this is Russia trying to influence how Americans vote in this election, and we believe strongly that Americans need to be aware of this.”
Nick Shapiro, a former top aide under CIA director John Brennan, provided POLITICO with the letter on Monday. He noted that “the IC leaders who have signed this letter worked for the past four presidents, including Trump. The real power here however is the number of former, working-level IC officers who want the American people to know that once again the Russians are interfering.”
Well, now we’re getting the truth many knew all along and the reason why, as even Politico admitted, there was “no new evidence” presented in the letter to prove the claim that it was Russian Disinformation: even those who signed the letter knew that “a significant portion” of the content was real.
Such came out when former Defense Intelligence Agency deputy director Douglas Wise told The Australian, “all of us figured that a significant portion of that content had to be real to make any Russian disinformation credible.”
Wise did also try to defend the letter, however, saying “The letter said it had the earmarks of Russian deceit and we should consider that as a possibility. It did not say Hunter Biden was a good guy, it didn’t say what he did was right and it wasn’t exculpatory, it was just a cautionary letter.”
Wise also defended signing the letter, saying that he does not regret signing it “because context is important”. He also claimed that the laptop’s “chain of custody” left open the possibility that “Russians or even ill-intended conservative elements could have planted stuff in there.”
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