Christopher Steele finally admits his infamous dossier is not 100% true but claims Michael Cohen DID meet with Kremlin officials in Prague and the Trump golden showers tape ‘probably’ exists
- Christopher Steele defended his dossier in clips of an interview on Sunday
- He stood by his claims Michael Cohen met with Kremlin officials in Prague and that there is ‘probably’ a Trump ‘golden showers’ tape
- Said Russians didn’t release the tape because they ‘felt they got pretty good value out of Donald Trump when he was president of the U.S.’
- The FBI concluded Cohen did not meet with Russians in Prague, but Steele says he wouldn’t admit to that because it’s ‘self incriminating to a very great degree’
- Steele says he’s speaking out now because ‘problems we identified back in 2016 haven’t gone away – and arguably have actually gotten worse’
- The ABC News special ‘Out of the Shadows: The Man Behind the Steele Dossier’ premiers on Hulu on Monday
Christopher Steele doubled-down on claims from his infamous dossier, insisting that Michael Cohen met with Russian officials in Prague and that the ‘golden showers’ tape of Donald Trump likely exists.
In his first major interview, which is set to come out on Hulu on Monday, Steele told ABC’s George Stephanopoulos that he is speaking out because ‘problems we identified back in 2016 haven’t gone away – and arguably have actually gotten worse.’
During previews of the interview shared on ABC This Week on Sunday, Steele defended his dossier against criticism and contradictions coming from the FBI and other probes into claims made in the bombshell opposition research document.
‘Today do you still believe that that tape exists?’ Stephanopoulos asked in reference to the salacious ‘golden showers’ tape claimed to exist in the dossier that has never come to light.
‘I think that it probably does, but I wouldn’t put 100 per cent certainty on it,’ he said.
Christopher Steele defended his dossier in clips of an interview set to air Monday where he stands by his claims Michael Cohen met with Kremlin officials in Prague and that there is ‘probably’ a Trump ‘golden showers’ tape
Doubts over the existence of the ‘golden showers’ tape have resulted in questions of the validity of the entire Steele Dossier, an opposition research document that led to the Russian collusion investigation. Then-candidate Donald and Melania Trump in Detroit in March 2016
‘So how do you explain if that tape does indeed exist, why hasn’t it been released?’ the ABC reporter pushed.
‘Well it hasn’t needed to be released?’
‘Because I think the Russians felt they got pretty good value out of Donald Trump when he was president of the U.S.,’ he said.
The tape in question is a claim in the Steele dossier that alleged Trump hired prostitutes in 2013 during a trip to Moscow and paid them to perform ‘golden showers’ or urination in front of him on the bed at the Ritz-Carlton’s presidential suite.
The dossier claims Trump did not participate but watched this display and says he wanted it performed because Barack and Michelle Obama had previously slept in that bed.
Since the claim came out, not evidence of such tape or that the events transpired have come to light.
Questions over the validity of one of the biggest – albeit odd and disturbing – claims of the dossier have led to doubt over the entire document, which led to the Russian collusion investigation.
Stephanopoulos also asked if the former British intelligence official ‘accepts’ the FBI findings that Cohen did not meet with Kremlin officials in Prague – like the Steele Dossier claims.
Steele replied: ‘No, I don’t.’
Michael Cohen has turned on Trump and went to prison. He has not, however, changed the story on not meeting with Kremlin officials in Prague
‘Michael Cohen has completely turned on Donald Trump. He’s accused him of all kinds of things, he’s gone to jail. It defies logic that if he did this he wouldn’t say so now?’ the ABC reporter questioned.
‘I don’t agree with that,’ Steele shot back, adding ‘it’s self incriminating to a very great degree.’
‘Since he’s gone to prison, since he’s turned on President Trump he’s told every single story. Why wouldn’t he admit to this?’ Stepheanpoulos pushed.
‘Because I think it’s so incriminating and demeaning and the other reason is he might be scared of the consequences,’ Steele said in the preview of ‘Out of the Shadows: The Man Behind the Steele Dossier’.
When pressed to answer whether he felt not bowing to that ‘hurts your credibility,’ Steele defended his dossier.
‘I’m prepared to accept that not everything in the dossier is 100 per cent accurate,’ he said. I have yet to be convinced that that is one of them.’
While testifying before the House Oversight Committee on February 27, 2019, Cohen said: ‘I’ve never been to Prague. I’ve never been to the Czech Republic.’
Later an FBI probe confirmed that claim.
‘So you stand by the dossier,’ Stephanopoulos probed Steele.
‘I stand by the work we did, the sources that we had, and the professionalism in which we applied to it,’ he said.
The ABC News special, formatted like a documentary, notes that Steele collected information about the salacious golden showers tape from people who merely heard about it or talked about it as a joke.
Stephanopoulos noted to Steele of his sources for the dossier: ‘One of your main collectors who spoke to the inspector general said that especially the kompromat was ‘word of mouth and hearsay,’ ‘conversations with friends over beers,’ ‘it was just talk.’
Kompromat refers to blackmail material.
‘If you have a confidential source and that confidential source is blown or uncovered, that confidential source will often take fright and try to downplay and underestimate what they said or done. And I think that’s probably what happened here,’ Steele responded.
‘He’s afraid?’ Stephanopoulos asked.
‘I think anyone named in this contact, particularly if they’re Russian, has every reason to be afraid.’
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