After The Guardian attempted to shovel what appears to be a wholly fabricated story down our throats that Trump campaign manager met with Julian Assange at the London Embassy - Politico allowed an ex-CIA agent to use their platform to come up with a ham-handed cover story ever; Russia tricked The Guardian into publishing the Manafort-Assange propaganda.
To that end, The Intercept's Glenn Greenwald (formerly of The Guardian) ripped Politico an entirely new oriface in a six-part Twitter dress down.
1/ Why do attacks on the US media - calling it "Fake News" - resonate so widely? Because of utterly fabricated and reckless articles like this one from @politico, by a former *CIA officer allowed to write under a "pen name"*. The whole thing is a fraud: https://t.co/kGRsiOXHHN— Glenn Greenwald (@ggreenwald) November 28, 2018
2/ The only point of the article is to *invent out of whole cloth* a wild conspiracy theory: that perhaps Russia-controlled operatives caused the @Guardian to publish a false story - its viral Assange/Manafort story - in order to discredit Luke Harding for his Russia reporting. pic.twitter.com/npCjM6HHJt— Glenn Greenwald (@ggreenwald) November 28, 2018
3/ The whole conspiracy theory is made up with no evidence. Worse, it relies on blatant fabrications, such as the one highlighted here. Everyone knows I didn't work with WL to report the Snowden story. It's a lie. But US media outlets are *willing to lie if the targets are right* pic.twitter.com/hAJr9yPj6P— Glenn Greenwald (@ggreenwald) November 28, 2018
4/ POLITICO also allowed this ex-CIA agent's to falsely claim that the only people raising doubts about the Guardian's story are people who are part of "Russia’s disinformation network." In fact, as @Emptywheel noted, a wide range of people raised doubts about the story. Compare: pic.twitter.com/kuIUMYQ5L3— Glenn Greenwald (@ggreenwald) November 28, 2018
5/ The US media has only itself to blame for the attacks on it. If you are willing to outright lie like this when it advances your narrative, invent wild conspiracy theories & malign people as Russian agents, you don't deserve the respect that media outlets demand they receive.— Glenn Greenwald (@ggreenwald) November 28, 2018
6/ In response to a highly dubious Guardian story, POLITICO allowed an ex-CIA officer to use a fake name to publish demonstrable lies and blame Russia for this potentially huge media scandal - zero self-critique. Why would a profession that acts this way expect to be trusted?— Glenn Greenwald (@ggreenwald) November 28, 2018
Greenwald also penned a harsh rebuke to the Guardian's "problematic" reporting in a Tuesday article titled: "It Is Possible Paul Manafort Visited Julian Assange. If True, There Should Be Ample Video and Other Evidence Showing This."
In sum, the Guardian published a story today that it knew would explode into all sorts of viral benefits for the paper and its reporters even though there are gaping holes and highly sketchy aspects to the story.
It is certainly possible that Paul Manafort, Roger Stone, and even Donald Trump himself “secretly” visited Julian Assange in the Embassy. It’s possible that Vladimir Putin and Kim Jong Un joined them.
And if any of that happened, then there will be mountains of documentary proof in the form of videos, photographs, and other evidence proving it. Thus far, no such evidence has been published by the Guardian. Why would anyone choose to believe that this is true rather than doing what any rational person, by definition, would do: wait to see the dispositive evidence before forming a judgment?
The only reason to assume this is true without seeing such evidence is because enough people want it to be true. The Guardian knows this. They knew that publishing this story would cause partisan warriors to excitedly spread the story, and that cable news outlets would hyperventilate over it, and that they’d reap the rewards regardless of whether the story turned out to be true or false. It may be true. But only the evidence, which has yet to be seen, will demonstrate that one way or the other. -Glenn Greenwald, The Intercept
In short, The Guardian tried to proffer a load of easily disprovable claims - which if not true, are pure propaganda. Once it began to blow up in their face, Politico let an ex-CIA operative try to save face by suggesting Russia did it. Insanity at its finest.