The book, Collusion: How Russia Helped Donald Trump Win, by the Guardian journalist Luke Harding, quotes Steele as telling friends that he believes his reports- based on sources cultivated over three decades of intelligence work- will be vindicated as the US special counseling investigation digs deeper into contacts between Trump, his associates and Moscow.
” I've been dealing with this country for 30 years. Why would I fabricate this stuff ?” Steele is quoted as saying.
One of the reasons his dossier was taken seriously in Washington in 2016 was Steele's reputation in the US for producing dependable provides information on Russia, according to Harding's book.
Between 2014 and 2016, he authored more than a hundred reports on Russia and Ukraine, which were commissioned by private clients but shared widely within the state department and passed across the desks of the secretary of state, John Kerry, and the deputy secretary Victoria Nuland, who led the US response to the annexation of Crimea and the covert invasion of eastern Ukraine.
The sources for those reports were the same as those quoted in the dossier on Trump, which included allegations that the Kremlin had personally compromising material on the US president, including sexuality tapes recorded during a trip to Moscow in 2013, and that Trump and his associates actively colluded with Russian intelligence to influence the election in his prefer.
Years earlier, Steele shared the results of his investigation of the global football organisation, Fifa, with a senior FBI official in Rome; that led to an investigation by US federal prosecutors, and ultimately the arrest of seven Fifa officers.
” The episode burnished Steele's reputation inside the US intelligence community and the FBI. Here was a pro, a well-connected Brit, who understood Russian espionage and its subterranean tricks. Steele was regarded as believable ,” Harding writes.