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Urgent: Trump's 'Putin Connection' Outed -- Part II (The Original Media Story was False)

See how Forbes magazine advanced a false narrative that supported Hillary Clinton's version of things

This post first appeared on Russia Insider

In Part I,  the Trump-Putin "nexus of evil" was revealed as a concoction of Hillary Clinton and her crowd. It may have been simply a convenient contrivance to craftily divert attention away from her entanglement in the Democrat's primary election-rigging scandal.

Forbes magazine played a key role in orchestrating this scandal at the start. 

A July 18 Forbes piece focused on the 2016 Republican platform vis-a-vis Russia. Its headline read, "Trump, Deferring to Putin, Deleted GOP Platform's Call to Supply Ukraine with Lethal Defensive Weapons."

There isn't anything in that headline that is demonstrably true. There's not much truth in the rest of the story, either.

Let's pick off a couple of the clearest points first.

Forbes said, "Under Putin, Russia is in the top list of journalists killed for political motives." 

The article references the Committee to Protect Journalists as the authority on that. But CPJ's own website puts that story in better perspective. Here is the organization's list of the 20 deadliest countries for journalists:

1. Iraq: 111
2. Philippines: 75
3. Algeria: 58
4. Colombia: 43
5. Somalia: 41
6. Russia: 36
7. Brazil: 36
8. Mexico: 34
9. Pakistan: 33
10. India: 26
11. Turkey: 22
12. Bangladesh: 19
13. Syria: 17
14. Rwanda: 17
15. Tajikistan: 14
16. Afghanistan: 12
17. Sri Lanka: 10
18. Sierra Leone: 9
19. Nigeria: 8
20. Peru: 8

While Russia really is in that top 20 list, it clearly does not top the list.

Forbes suggested these murders in Russia were political assassinations. 

But CPJ instead calls them "Journalists Killed in Russia/Motive Confirmed." CPJ goes on to explain: "We consider a case 'confirmed' only if we are reasonably certain that a journalist was murdered in direct reprisal for his or her work; was killed in crossfire during combat situations; or was killed while carrying out a dangerous assignment such as coverage of a street protest." 

That covers a lot more territory than the alleged political assassinations ordered by Putin per the Forbes' article. It could include a death resulting from a business dispute, a result of a war zone injury, or a result of a domestic protest gone violent, among other things.

Forbes lied. The CPJ statistics are not focused on politically motivated deaths. 

Certainly the 36 journalist deaths in Russia are nothing to brag about. But here's another fact. All those journalist murders for which Forbes blames Putin didn't even happen under Putin's watch. Indeed, under Yeltsin there were more murders per year on average.

Again Forbes lied, plain and simple.

And just to illustrate the utter vacuousness of the Forbes claims: one of the journalists murdered after Putin became president is Paul Klebnikov, an American of Russian decent, and, ironically, editor of the Russian edition of Forbes

Klebnikov was no critic of Putin, and actually admired him. According to NBC News, "He saw his ancestral homeland, after years of crime-infused chaos and government corruption, moving forward under a strong leader, President Vladimir Putin."

These days, however, it's become clear that Forbes now pursues actively an agenda of provocation when it comes to Putin.

And so now to the Forbes headline in question: It claims that Trump was "deferring to Putin." Webster's defines deference as, "respect and esteem due a superior or an elder, or affected or ingratiating regard for another's wishes.

Putin isn't "a superior" or "an elder" to Trump. That means Forbes must be suggesting that Trump is carrying out Putin's wishes. But no evidence is presented to support that astonishing claim. Are we just supposed to take Forbes' word for it? After its record of outright lies about Putin?

The Forbes article goes on, "According to multiple accounts, the Trump campaign has successfully worked behind the scenes to make sure the new Republican platform would not pledge the lethal defensive weapons Ukraine has been pleading for from the United States."

I don't know whether or not that's true. It is certainly plausible, and indeed, the platform does not contain a pledge to provide lethal defensive weapons to Ukraine. 

But in making its case, Forbes lies again. The "multiple accounts" it cites? There are only two given. One is a Washington Post article by Josh Rogin. The other is a New York magazine article that quotes that same Washington Post article by Josh Rogin.

So the "multiple accounts" that upon first glance seem to be only two references, turn out to be just a single source reference, that to the comments of Josh Rogin.

That's more deception from Forbes.

But what did this sole source, Josh Rogin, actually say? He claims to have inside information from the Republican platform committee. He doesn't explain how he came by that inside information, but apparently just expects us to trust him. 

Rogin wrote, "Diana Denman, a platform committee member from Texas who was a Ted Cruz supporter, proposed a platform amendment that would call for maintaining or increasing sanctions against Russia, increasing aid for Ukraine and 'providing lethal defensive weapons' to the Ukrainian military."

So, if we take Rogin at his word, he is saying not that Trump had something deleted from the platform. He's saying that an amendment was proposed but not adopted. 

That chalks up another lie for Forbes. A platform provision was not deleted as claimed by Forbes. Instead, a proposed amendment was simply not accepted as submitted. That puts a different slant on the story.

So a Trump-Putin nexus has been trumpeted by many, including Forbes, the New York Times and others. It has been demonstrated, though, that their attempts to out a nefarious link between Trump and Putin are based on lies and innuendo. 

In the end, a close examination of the details shows Hillary Clinton as the culprit who is outed. It is she and her people who invented Trump's "Putin connection," likely in order to divert attention away from Clinton's entanglement in a primary election-rigging scandal that seemingly delegitimizes her presidential nomination.

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