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News Link • Wikileaks

WikiLeaks, Julian Assange and Me The Anatomy of a Fake News Avalanche


The fake news media is in overdrive. The constant torrent of disinformation and manipulative 'reporting' from fake news outlets like the Daily Beast, Salon, Slate, and Talking Points Memo is as predictable as it is hysterical.

One would expect higher standards from the Wall Street Journal but, sadly, the Journal has now joined the perpetually-obtuse fake news lynch mob nipping at my heels with constant recycling of repeatedly-discredited claims of collaboration between me, Wikileaks, Julian Assange and the Russians.

On April 2, 2018, the Journal breathlessly reported about an August 3, 2016 email I sent to Sam Nunberg, in which I joked that I had dined with Julian Assange in London the night before.

This email, with its purely tongue-in-cheek comment about dinner with Assange, was simply a continuation of the same joke I had sarcastically made to Nunberg as I ended a prior phone call with him, after it had dragged on for far too long. This call, with my original jest about 'meeting with Assange', was first reported by the Washington Post.

Sam, being a neurotic, would sometimes call me dozens of times throughout the day. Late one Friday night, while I was trying to get him off the phone, he asked me if I had weekend plans. I responded, "I think I'll fly to London and have dinner with Julian Assange".

I was astonished when I read the Post's deadly-serious treatment of what was a completely-farcical offhanded comment, made in pure jest at the end of yet another dragged-out phone call with Sam Nunberg.

More so, I was flabbergasted that any intelligent person with the slightest discernment would not only interpret this flippant, facially-absurd wisecrack as some sort of nefarious admission, but would persist in doing so even after I had made it explicitly clear that it was a joke.

At all times before, during and after both that phone call and the subsequent tongue-in-cheek email that made my "dinner with Assange" into a running joke, I was firmly ensconced right here in the United States of America, nowhere near London, Assange or anything even resembling foreign soil.  Yet, incredibly, the Wall Street Journal took these toss-away comments seriously enough report as though it was possible for me to be in two places at once…in fact, on two different continents at once.

Sam, a little too intense to say the least, and with his head not screwed on quite right, apparently fell for it when I hung up with him saying I was to meet with Assange.

It had been nothing but a throwaway line, pure shtick, the way I talk, the humor I savor, as anyone who knows me well will attest (anyone without an ulterior agenda, that is). When I realized that Nunberg actually believed that I had flown to London, I simply milked the joke a little more in a subsequent email. End of story.

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