Former acting Director of National Intelligence (DNI) Richard Grenell accused a Politico reporter of acting as a “total Democrat activist” Monday, after she appeared to defend President Joe Biden’s decision to waive sanctions on Russia’s Nord Stream 2 natural gas pipeline.
A State Department report last month suggested that Nord Stream 2, the company behind the pipeline to Germany—which is said to be closely tied to Russian President Vladimir Putin—engaged in sanctionable activity. On Monday, Biden’s secretary of state, Anthony Blinken waived those sanctions, claiming the decision to be in the best interest of the United States.
“Germany loves @SecBlinken. He has given them their Russian gas pipeline,” Grenell, who served as U.S. ambassador to Germany under the Trump administration, wrote on Twitter.
Politico foreign affairs correspondent Nahal Toosi suggested that Grenell played a direct role in the development of the pipeline during his ambassadorship in a responding thread.
“Didn’t most of the Nord Stream 2 pipeline’s construction happen when you were ambassador to Germany?” she wrote on Twitter.
Critics said Toosi was uninformed of the widespread reports that Grenell, who vocally opposed the project, sent threatening letters to German companies working on the Nord Stream 2 pipeline, warning them at the time of possible sanctions if they did not pull out, according to Germany’s mass-circulation “Bild am Sonntag.”
“It’s scary that you cover foreign policy because you are a total Democrat activist,” Grenell fired back. “Any unbiased observer knows it was planned, approved and construction began under Obama/Biden. The Trump team dramatically slowed it down and ensured it wasn’t finished.”
Toosi rejected Grenell’s assertion, insisting that she is “not a member of any political party.”
“First, I’m not a member of any political party,” she responded. “Second, I think this whole debate shows how complicated this issue has been for both Democratic and Republican administrations. It’s interesting how both sides blame the other when it’s not clear what all can be done.”
Less than an hour later, however, Noosi came to Obama’s defense, insisting that he “opposed” the project and questioned whether “any U.S. admin supported it?”
Twitter critics were quick to call out her inconsistent reporting.
“@nahaltoosi is like the majority of so called journalist today, disingenuous, dishonest, incompetent, and lazy. It is no surprise that she doesn’t have a clue,” a user responded.
“Are you really this uninformed or being deliberately obtuse?” questioned another.
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