The credibility of a BBC documentary about US President-elect Donald Trump called ‘Trump: The Kremlin Candidate?’ has been questioned by ex-MP George Galloway.
The former Labour and Respect politician likened the broadcast, and the whole furore over Russia’s alleged influence on the US election and Trump, to an “Austin Powers film.”
Speaking to RT, Galloway also questioned why the BBC would commission such a prominent show when there was no concrete evidence to back up any of the assertions.
The Panorama documentary was broadcast on Monday and saw journalist John Sweeney travel to Russia, Ukraine, and the US to investigate whether Moscow’s cyber-warriors influenced the US election and whether it’s true the Federal Security Service (Russian FSB) is blackmailing Trump with compromising material.
The latter claim comes from a much-hyped dossier compiled by ex-MI6 spy Christopher Steele.
In the broadcast, Sweeney also speculates that the only thing worse than Trump getting along well with Putin is if they don’t.
“As Shakespeare once put it, it was ‘much ado about nothing.’ The thesis of the problem was that it is really dangerous if Trump and Putin get along well and it’s really dangerous if they fall out,” Galloway said.
“It shows just how surreal this whole affair has become. Not so much a James Bond film as an Austin Powers film. Frankly, much of the ruling elite in the US and in Britain, across the road from me, across the river, at MI6, they really are making themselves look ridiculous.”
Galloway, a long-time critic of US foreign policy, went on to question why the broadcast was made at all given the scant proof.
In the documentary, former US Navy Intelligence officer Malcolm Nance states that everything in the Steele dossier “fits hand in glove with how Russian intelligence works.”
“That doesn’t mean it’s true,” Sweeney adds.
Galloway seizes on this. “If it doesn’t mean it’s true and you have no evidence it’s true, why are you making a big flagship documentary program about it?” he said.
“Isn’t it an essential of broadcasting journalism that you have something to go on? Not just a piece of paper written by a superannuated spy from England who’s neither in Moscow nor in New York in Trump Towers, whose writing through second, third hand sources.”