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Hunter Biden’s Laptop Controversy Reignites

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Hunter Biden | Image by MSNBC

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Hunter Biden’s laptop is still generating controversy about the contentious 2020 election, which has yet to dissipate from the political landscape in the U.S.

The New York Times recently confirmed the legitimacy of Hunter Biden’s infamous laptop, which was left at a Delaware repair shop in 2019 and given to the FBI by the repair shop owner. A copy of the hard drive was later turned over to the New York Post.

The Times mentioned that the newspaper and prosecutors acquired evidence from “a trove of files that appears to have come from a laptop abandoned by Hunter Biden in a Delaware repair shop” in a piece about Biden’s tax liability and possible criminal charges.

The story notes that emails related to the tax liability case “were authenticated by people familiar with them and the investigation.”

This acknowledgment of the authenticity of the laptop and its contents is a reversal for The Times, as the paper had previously cast doubt on the origins of the computer, calling the information it contained “unsubstantiated.”

In October of 2020, the New York Post first broke the story of the laptop. The computer was said to contain emails indicating that Hunter Biden had set up a business meeting between his father (then-Vice President Joe Biden) and a Ukrainian gas company official.

The article implied that the Biden family may have profited from the vice president’s political position.

According to Fox News, Politico Playbook published reporting from correspondent Ben Schreckinger’s book The Bidens, which delves into the emails that surfaced in the explosive reporting that Big Tech eventually suppressed.

Per the Playbook, “A person with independent access to Hunter Biden’s emails confirmed he did receive an email in 2015 from a Ukrainian businessman thanking him for the opportunity to meet Joe Biden. The same can be said for a 2017 email [containing] a proposed equity breakdown of a venture with Chinese energy executives.”

“Emails released by a Swedish government agency match emails in the leaked cache, and two people who corresponded with Hunter Biden confirmed the cache emails were genuine,” the Playbook reported. “While the leak contains genuine files, it is possible that fake material has been slipped in.”

Politico’s report, written by Natasha Bertrand of CNN, cited an open letter signed by “more than 50 former senior intelligence officials” who insisted that the published emails from the laptop bore “all the hallmarks of a Russian information operation.”

The letter, widely disseminated in the media, falsely claimed that the emails had been hacked and tampered with by the Kremlin to make their contents appear incriminating.

The controversy over the authenticity of the laptop and its contents, exacerbated by the letter and its claims of Russian disinformation, took place just weeks before the 2020 presidential election; the significance of the story’s effect on the election has been debated.

News agency Citizen Stringer wrote that in the weeks leading up to the November vote, the laptop story was quickly picked up by people who had yet to make up their minds about who they would vote for in the presidential election.

Outspoken Trump critics John Brennan, James Clapper, Michael Hayden, Leon Panetta, and Jeremy Bash were among those who signed the letter, according to Fox News.

John Sipher, a former senior operations officer at the CIA, also signed the letter.

After The New York Times’ certification of the laptop’s existence brought it back to the forefront of the U.S. political conversation, Sipher further stirred up the story.

Sipher has been active on Twitter and across the internet, saying he played a crucial role in the 2020 election by signing the letter.

However, Sipher walked those claims back on March 30, saying he “mockingly joked” that he had “fixed the election.”

“For those in a sweaty rage over something or another, this is called sarcasm,” Sipher tweeted. “As if a retired dude on Twitter could swing an election of 300 million ppl (sic) over an issue that has nothing to do with said election.”

Zero Hedge reports that letter signees Clapper and Russ Travers have said they still feel their decision to sign the October letter was appropriate.

Clapper, who previously served as the national director of Intelligence, commented that its contents had reflected the information available at the time.

Travers, the former interim director of the National Counterterrorism Center, defended the distrust of Russia central to the letter by citing the country’s invasion of Ukraine as evidence of its untrustworthy actions.

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