The New York Times received the prestigious George Polk Award for journalism from Long Island University on February 20 for its 2017 story, “Trump Campaign Aides Had Repeated Contacts with Russian Intelligence.” That’s quite strange because the story was debunked by the FBI, with former Director James Comey calling it “almost entirely wrong.”
“In essence, the story asserted that Trump people colluded with Russian intelligence, which hacked Democrat Party computers in 2015-16,” The Washington Times reports. “The story, plus the infamous Christopher Steele dossier, played major roles in pushing the Trump-Russian collusion narrative in Washington as committees ramped up investigations. More than a year later, Republicans contend there was no collusion.”
At the Senate Select Committee on Intelligence last year, Comey was asked by Sen. Tom Cotton (R-AR) if he would characterize the NYT story as “almost entirely wrong.”
Comey answered in the affirmative and also told Sen. James Risch (R-ID), “In the main, [the story] was not true.”
“And, again, all of you know this, maybe the American people don’t,” Comey added. “The challenge — and I’m not picking on reporters about writing stories about classified information, is that people talking about it often don’t really know what’s going on.”
Despite Comey’s dispute, the NYT never cooled its engines and pressed the Russia/Trump collusion narrative, and for that, the work was praised:
“Special recognition goes out this year to the staffs of The New York Times and The Washington Post for their extraordinary effort in uncovering the connection between the Trump presidential campaign and the Kremlin that led to Special Counsel Robert Mueller’s ongoing investigation. The Polk judges felt the investigative work, based on the cultivation of sources, was equally outstanding on the part of both newspapers and may play a significant role in safeguarding our democracy from foreign interference.”
The NYT based its premise on the unverified dossier of Steele, an ex-British spy, that was financed by Democrats and alleged an “extensive conspiracy” between Trump and the Kremlin, the Washington Times noted.
Trophies for everyone!