Lee Stranahan
6 min readDec 4, 2018

Over the weekend, Wikileaks tweeted about how CNN had reported last year a denial by the Democratic National Committee and Hilary Clinton officials of illegal election collusion between the DNC and the government of Ukraine during the 2015 election. CNN’s conduct is a textbook example of smothering a story and leaving out relevant facts.

The tweet was timely given former FBI director James Comey’s scheduled testimony in front of Congress this coming Friday, Ukraine’s headline-making confrontation with Russia and subsequent declaration of martial law, and CNN’s relentless whining about being called “fake news.”

The story that CNN was trying to bury was published in Politico in January 2017 titled Ukrainian efforts to sabotage Trump backfire. That story was written by David Stern and Ken Vogel (who is now writing at the New York Times) detailed how a DNC operative named Alexander Chalupa worked closely with officials at the Ukrainian Embassy in Washington, including Ukrainian Ambassador Chaly, to try and dig up dirt connecting Donald Trump and Paul Manafort to Russia. The story also mentions that Chalupa told people that the Democrats were planning to hold hearing connecting Trump to Russia in fall of 2016, just before the election.

It should be noted that this illegal attempt to gather information from the Democrats was underway by March, 2016…which is before the alleged Russian hacking of the DNC was detected as well before the Trump Tower meeting that are cited by the media as examples of Russian collusion. In other words, the DNC was actively working on a plan to connect Trump to Russia before the alleged collusion ever happened.

Wikileaks Published Email Revealed Illegal Election Collusion

This was all detailed in the Politico story, which was very well reported and included quotes from Chalupa herself that effectively admitted to the collusion with the Ukrainian government. Additionally, the Politico story linked directly to an email that been published by WikiLeaks showing that Alexandra Chalupa had sent an email to DNC communications director Luis Miranda updating him on a meeting she had had with a group of journalist from Ukraine that had been put together by the US Embassy in Kyiv.

The fact that Chalupa was telling Luis Miranda this becomes more significant when you realize that Miranda was the communications director who was handpicked by Hillary Clinton’s team. This was revealed in the secret Joint Fundraising Agreement(JFA), signed by Hillary campaign chair Robbie Mook, was revealed in the fall of 2017.

Point 1 of the JFA says:

With respect to the hiring of a DNC Communications Director, the DNC agrees that no later than September 11, 2015 it will hire one of two candidates previously identified as acceptable to HFA

Luis Miranda’s hiring was announced on September 18. This means that DNC operative Alexandra Chalupa was reporting directly to someone put in place by the Clinton team.

The email published by Wikileaks also revealed that Chalupa had been working with veteran investigative reporter Michael Isikoff, the reporter who would go on to laud Alexandra Chalupa as one of 16 people who shaped the 2016 electionin an article published in late October 2016 when he probably assumed Hillary Clinton would win. Isikoff accompanied Chalupa after election, as well, when she and convicted serial bomber Brett Kimberlin were trying to keep Trump from being inaugurated. Isikoff was the recipient of leaks form the Steele dossier, and expressed shock that an article of his was part of the FISA warrant against Carter Page.

There’s more in Alexandra Chalupa’s email, such as the fact that Chalupa used the supposedly non-partisan George Soros connected Open World Leadership Center to enlist foreign journalists to help smear Paul Manafort and Donald Trump, but the fact that the Chalupa email was published at all shows the tremendous public good that Wikileaks and founder Julian Assange have done by being brave enough to pull back the curtain on the corruption that lurks just under the surface of Washington D.C.

Anyone trying to get to the truth of the story would use the Wikileaks published email as a starting point to run down facts and as a clear smoking gun for what is obviously a much deeper story of collusion and election interference with a foreign government.

But…this is CNN

Killing the Truth by Omission

The Politico story seem to have gone down the memory hole after Trump’s inauguration but it reared its head again in July 2017, when White House spokesperson Sarah Sanders brought it up at a press briefing, saying “If you’re looking for an example of a campaign coordinating with a foreign country or a foreign source, look no further than the DNC, who actually coordinated opposition research with the Ukrainian Embassy.”

CNN sprung into action with two separate stories on their website.

Neither makes any reference at all the Wikileaks published email. By not mentioning this email at all and by publishing statements made by DNC officials and Alexandra Chalupa herself that are contradicted by her own email, CNN engaged in fraud on their audience.

On July 12, 2017, CNN ran an article entitled DNC denies working with Ukrainian government, but contractor floated anti-Trump material and it’s an object lesson in how to use selective omission to try to bury a story that does not fit the mainstream media narrative.

CNN not only did not mention the email, they acted like it didn’t exist. The obvious person to get comment from would be Luis Miranda, the recipient of the Wikileaks published email. Instead CNN quoted Robbie Mook, the man who signed the JFA that put Miranda in place.

Robby Mook, Clinton’s former campaign manager, also denied that anyone from the Clinton campaign was talking to Ukrainian government officials in an effort to get opposition research on Russia.

“Our campaign wasn’t,” he said. “Foreign agents weren’t reaching out to us.”

Mook later denied any knowledge of Chalupa.

Apparently, Mook wasn’t reading Politico in January, 2017.

But CNN did report that multiple sources confirmed details of the story, although they downplay Chalupa as a “contractor.” Then immediately follow with a flat denial from the DNC. CNN wrote:

But multiple Democratic sources said that a DNC contractor, whose work included organizing political events for Ukranian-Americans, did tell DNC operatives that Ukrainian officials would be willing to deliver damaging information on Trump’s campaign and, most notably, Paul Manafort, his then-campaign head who has previously advised Viktor Yanukovych, the former Ukrainian President who has close ties to Moscow.

“These allegations are false. Period,” said Adrienne Watson, spokeswoman for the Democratic National Committee.

That initial CNN story says they reached out for comment to Chalupa, but did not hear back.

Then on July 14, 2017, CNN published First on CNN: Former DNC contractor denies working with Ukrainian officials on anti-Trump researchand again, no mention of Chalupa’s own email that had been published by Wikileaks.

CNN allowed Chalupa to make what PR people refer to as a “non-denial denial.”

“During the 2016 US election, I was a part time consultant for the DNC running an ethnic engagement program,” Chalupa said in a lengthy statement to CNN. “I was not an opposition researcher for the DNC, and the DNC never asked me to go to the Ukrainian Embassy to collect information.”

Then CNN prints another claim by Chalupa that is clearly contradicted by her own email.

Chalupa, who maintained other clients while working for the DNC, does say she had a “couple” meetings with “representatives of the Ukrainian Embassy,” but that those meetings had to do with an “Immigrant Heritage Month women’s networking event” she helped organize in June with Melanne Verveer, a Ukrainian-American and former US Ambassador for Global Women’s Issues at the State Department under Hillary Clinton.

Nor does CNN mention that Chalupa worked in Bill Clinton’s White House. Nor does it mention that Andrea Chalupa, Alexandra’s sister, said in tweets in 2016 that Alexandra “led Trump/Russia research at DNC.”

Nor did CNN reach out to the Ukrainian whistleblower mentioned in the Politico piece, Andrii Telizhenko, who would have told them that Chalupa introduced herself to him as working for the Hillary Clinton campaign and that he was told by Ukrianian Ambassador Chaly to work with her on getting dirt on the Trump campaign.

CNN wasn’t doing journalism. They ignored key pieces of evidence, did a couple of stories that allowed the DNC to get denials on the record and then stopped talking about it at all.

Remember this next time you hear CNN complaining about how badly they are treated, and then remember that there’s a journalist who IS facing harsh treatment for telling the truth: Julian Assange.

Lee Stranahan

Lee Stranahan is an investigative journalist & filmmaker formerly with Breitbart News & the Huffington Post. He is the host of The Backstory on Radio Sputnik.