In Jane Mayer's New Yorker hagiography of Steele, the urine story came from multiple sources (none of whom were in the room at the time which tells you how worthless they are).
But David Corn and Michael Isikoff, who are even bigger insiders in Steeleworld than Mayer, have their own version of the story. Corn was the first guy on the ground and the FBI had used Isikoff's version of Steele's material to corroborate Steele's account (it's the old GIGO principle) to spy on Trump associates.
Here's their version of the story.
During the 2016 presidential campaign, the founder of the opposition research firm behind the Steele dossier tipped a major news network off to Sergei Millian, a Belarus-born businessman who has been identified as a source for the salacious claims made in the dossier.
Glenn Simpson, the founder of Fusion GPS, provided the tip to ABC News despite having doubts about the veracity of Millian’s claims about President Donald Trump.
According to Isikoff and Corn, former British spy Christopher Steele revealed to Simpson that Millian was “Source D” for the dossier, which was funded by former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton’s campaign and the Democratic National Committee.
“Simpson would later learn from Steele the identity of Source D, the main source for the ‘golden showers’ allegation: It was Sergei Millian,” the book reads.
“Source D” is described in a June 20, 2016, memo written by Steele as “a close associate of TRUMP who had organized and managed his recent trips to Moscow.” The dossier claims that the source — now known as Millian — confirmed that the Kremlin had been feeding the Trump team intelligence on Clinton
We've gone from claims that the dossier is so secret that we shouldn't even talk about it, because any mention of it might get people killed, to Fusion GPS casually passing names along to ABC News.
What kind of intel operative passes along the names of sources to the media? The kind who isn't taking this very seriously. Because it's not.
If Steele were really the figure that his media PR corps want to pretend he is, then he was uncovering a Russian intelligence operation to control the future president of the United States. And he would treat sources in that investigation very carefully.
But clearly that wasn't happening. And the whole story is ridiculous.
Isikoff and Corn report that Millian was not aware his comments were being used to spy on Trump. “Like all of those who had spoken to Steele’s collector, Millian was an unwitting source; he had no idea his conversation with the collector would be passed along to Trump’s political foes,” they wrote.
So we've got a guy who is high placed enough to be privy to all this juicy Kompromat, yet clueless about why a former Brit intel officer might be asking him about this?
Again, how stupid does this gang think we are?
Why claim that Millian didn't know? Because it protects the political credibility of the dossier. This way Republicans can't claim that the Russians were planting the information. But it discredits the whole process.
“The memo had described Millian as a Trump intimate, but there was no public evidence he was close to the mogul at that time or was in Moscow during the Miss Universe event,” the book reads. “Had Millian made something up or repeated rumors he had heard from others to impress Steele’s collector? Simpson had his doubts. He considered Millian a big talker.”
Those doubts did not stop Simpson from telling ABC News about Millian, whose real name is Siarhei Kukuts.
This is one serious investigation.
Reached by The Daily Caller News Foundation, Millian disputed Steele’s claims and the new book.
“It’s all garbage news,” he told TheDCNF.
“Never happened,” he added, saying that he “was not in Moscow on that night.”
Wouldn't be the first time. The Steele dossier had similarly placed Michael Cohen where he wasn't.