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Politics The New York Times called ‘Anonymous’ op-ed author Miles Taylor a Trump ‘senior official.’ Was that accurate?

01:45  29 october  2020
01:45  29 october  2020 Source:   washingtonpost.com

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WASHINGTON — Miles Taylor , the former chief of staff at the Department of Homeland Security, was the anonymous author of The New York Times Op - Ed article in 2018 whose description of President Trump as “impetuous, adversarial, petty and ineffective” roiled Washington and set off a hunt for his

Miles Taylor - Anonymous Bro - was not a senior administration officer. Miles Taylor complained in writing about Trump ’s anti-immigrant policies. But he worked as the @DHSgov secretary’s chief of Imagine if Miles Taylor had attached his name to the original Anonymous Op - Ed and then resigned?

The mystery surrounding the identity of “Anonymous” — the unnamed “senior official in the Trump administration” who wrote a damning New York Times opinion piece and bestselling book criticizing the president — was resolved by the author’s self-reveal on Tuesday. But the lifting of veil only opened other questions:

a man and a woman looking at the camera: Miles Taylor, right, with then-Secretary of Homeland Security Kirstjen Nielsen in March 2018 when he served as her chief of staff. Taylor on Tuesday revealed himself to be the anonymous “senior official” who penned a stunning op-ed and book disclosing chaos in the Trump White House. © Tim Godbee/Department of Homeland Security via AP Miles Taylor, right, with then-Secretary of Homeland Security Kirstjen Nielsen in March 2018 when he served as her chief of staff. Taylor on Tuesday revealed himself to be the anonymous “senior official” who penned a stunning op-ed and book disclosing chaos in the Trump White House.

Was it really accurate to describe the author as a “senior” official? Was the anonymity granted by his book publisher and the New York Times justified? And given his role in implementing one of the administration’s cruelest policies, was he really the righteous whistleblower he portrayed himself to be?

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Former Department of Homeland Security official Miles Taylor on Wednesday revealed himself as “ Anonymous ,” the author of an op - ed Taylor — who had previously denied he was “ Anonymous ” — triggered intense speculation about the identity fo the disguntled staffer in September 2018 when

It’s rare for The New York Times to grant an Op - Ed writer anonymity , but the piece, by a senior administration official President Trump greeting sheriffs from across the country on Wednesday, when “We have somebody in what I call the failing New York Times talking about he’s part of the

Miles Taylor, the 33-year-old former chief of staff to Kristjen Nielsen when she headed the Department of Homeland Security, disclosed on Twitter that he wrote the column entitled “I Am Part of the Resistance Inside the Trump Administration,” which the Times published in September 2018.

[Book by ‘Anonymous’ describes Trump as cruel, inept and a danger to the nation]

In recent months, Taylor, who resigned from the administration last year, has become a prominent anti-Trump pundit on CNN. He is also the co-founder of a group called the Republican Political Alliance for Integrity and Reform, which supports former Vice President Joe Biden’s presidential campaign.

Taylor’s 900-word piece for the Times described in general terms efforts by White House staffers, including himself, to respond to Trump’s “amorality” and “impulsiveness,” which he wrote had resulted “in half-baked, ill-informed and occasionally reckless decisions that have to be walked back.”

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The Times is taking the rare step of publishing an anonymous Op - Ed essay. [The author of this Op - Ed will publish a book in November 2019 titled “A Warning.”] The dilemma — which he does not fully grasp — is that many of the senior officials in his own administration are working diligently from

What does a Trump administration official have in common with a woman fleeing gang violence in El They share the rare distinction of having written anonymous op - eds for the New York Times . At the top of the page was a note, “The author wrote on the condition of anonymity because of the

The column enraged Trump; he took to Twitter to call the unknown writer “gutless” and demanded, for reasons of national security, that the Times must “turn him/her over to the government at once.” Trump didn’t say how the unflattering column jeopardized national security, but he did suggest a crime: “TREASON?” he tweeted.

“Anonymous” followed up with a book-length essay addressing the same themes as his Times column. Entitled “A Warning,” it reached the top of the non-fiction bestseller list last November.

Neither the Times nor Taylor’s publisher, Twelve Books, revealed his identity, describing him only as a “senior” official.

The phrase “senior administration official” is not a formal job category; it’s often used as shorthand by White House officials and journalists to describe a range of people who have delivered information for publication “on background,” meaning without being identified.

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The New York Times had identified the op - ed author as a "a senior official in the Trump administration," and on Tuesday, the spokesperson for the The official wrote last year that a group of officials was working within the administration for the express purpose of thwarting what the author

The New York Times ran a op - ed by an “ Anonymous ” author more than two years ago described as a senior member of the Trump Administration who “An unprecedented behind-the-scenes portrait of the Trump presidency from the anonymous senior official whose first words of warning about the

But in Taylor’s case, the phrase was crucial to lending his column and book gravitas. Some guessed that “Anonymous” might be a Cabinet official, a prominent top advisor like Kellyanne Conway or even Vice President Pence. The guessing game that surrounded “Anonymous” fueled interest in his column and book, much as anonymity drove interest in the 1996 novel “Primary Colors,” a roman a clef about Bill Clinton that was later revealed to have been written not by a White House insider but by Time magazine columnist Joe Klein.

Taylor’s unmasking seems to raise a question: Does a chief of staff to a cabinet member qualify as “senior”?

“I would not describe him as a senior administration official,” said Joe Lockhart, who served as press secretary in the Clinton administration.

In his definition, “senior administration officials” are assistants to the president, Cabinet officials, and the principals and deputies in the national security apparatus. “That’s what I think of when I read that term, and that’s what I think a lot of other people think,” he added.

Opinions | New York Times, CNN sullied by ‘Anonymous’ charade

  Opinions | New York Times, CNN sullied by ‘Anonymous’ charade It smelled bad at the time, and now we know that it was. On Wednesday, the author of a widely read 2018 op-ed in the Times shed his anonymity. Miles Taylor, a former official at the Department of Homeland Security, admitted his authorship in a Medium post. The Times confirmed that he was the guy: “We take seriously our obligations to protect sources. Many important stories in sensitive areas like politics, national security and business could never be reported if our journalists violated that trust. In this case, however, the writer has personally waived our agreement to keep his identity confidential. We can confirm that he is the author of the Anonymous op-ed.

By The New York Times . The Times ’s Opinion desk has taken the rare step of publishing an anonymous Op - Ed essay. We did so at the request of the author , a senior official in the Trump administration whose identity is known to us and whose job would be jeopardized by its disclosure.

Trump demands New York Times hand over 'gutless' senior official behind anonymous Rare anonymous New York Times op - ed takes pointed shots at Trump ; author claims to be a senior official in Trump lashed out after the op - ed was published and questioned if the 'so- called " Senior

Jonathan Karl, ABC News chief Washington correspondent, acknowledged that the term is a blurry one. But “in this context I don’t think anybody when they read the anonymous op-ed in the New York Times thought it was someone who was an advisor to a Cabinet secretary who had very little contact with the president himself.”

Olivia Nuzzi, Washington reporter for New York Magazine, said that the times she’s used that attribution it’s been the product of a negotiation with a source. “It’s so vague as to be meaningless, which is why sources want it, but that’s also why it can feel like a deceit for the reader when they learn who you’re actually talking to.”

In the case of an anonymous author, “the prospect of who it might be creates more interest than who it really is,” said Lockhart. “Going public ends the game. People play the game because it is fun and interesting and it’s like anything — the more hype and speculation, the higher propensity for disappointment.”

Both the Times and Twelve Books declined to comment on how they labeled Taylor.

“We take seriously our obligations to protect sources,” Times spokeswoman Danielle Rhoades Ha said. “Many important stories in sensitive areas like politics, national security and business could never be reported if our journalists violated that trust.” In this case, she said Taylor had waived his right to confidentiality; she confirmed that Taylor was the author, but had no further comment.

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James Bennet, the Times editorial page editor who oversaw the “Anonymous” column, resigned from the newspaper over the summer amid a separate tempest, the publication of a column by Sen. Tom Cotton (R-Ark.) that urged military intervention to quell civic protests following the death of George Floyd. He could not be reached for comment.

Twelve Books also confirmed Taylor’s authorship. “Miles Taylor has been a great publishing partner and we support Miles and the true act of political courage it took to tell his story,” said publisher Sean Desmond in a statement.

Taylor himself defended his use of anonymity in a Medium post on Tuesday that disclosed his authorship of the anti-Trump writings.

“Issuing my critiques without attribution forced the President to answer them directly on their merits or not at all, rather than creating distractions through petty insults and name-calling,” he wrote. “I wanted the attention to be on the arguments themselves. At the time I asked, “What will he do when there is no person to attack, only an idea?” We got the answer. He became unhinged. And the ideas stood on their own two feet.”

But Taylor’s role in implementing Trump’s highly controversial family-separation policy while he worked for Nielsen may undermine his own integrity in the eyes of critics. Under the policy, U.S. immigration agents took children away from adults who crossed the southern border, housing them in separate facilities.

Amid an international outcry, Trump reversed course and rescinded the policy in mid-2018. But even today, its effects linger. Some 545 children who were separated from their parents under the program still have not been reunited with their parents, lawyers appointed by a federal judge reported last week. About two-thirds of those parents were deported to Central America without their children, according to the attorneys.

The NYT Exaggerated the Stature of ‘Anonymous’ — and the Rest of Media Built Him Up Even Further .
On the day the op-ed was published, Miles Taylor was not even listed on DHS’s website under “Leadership.” “I would not describe him as a senior administration official,” former Clinton press secretary Joe Lockhart — who tweeted in 2018 that the “anonymous op-ed writer in the White House” should “get the pen out again” — told the Washington Post. This time around, the Times declined to tell the Post why Taylor had been described as a “senior administration official.

usr: 4
This is interesting!