In the category of “if @CNN would always produce objective reports like this, maybe we’d start to trust them” . . .

Ex-spies weigh in on Russian hacking allegations

CNN—this time in a report by Mallika Kallingal—just can’t seem to refrain from shading the truth. They desperately want real evidence that Trump is a Putin pawn, but none has yet come to light. So they get three real former spies to comment on the situation and all of the spies’ comments support a much more relaxed take on the situation, at least implying if not outright saying that it is unlikely Trump or any member of his team actively “colluded” with Putin. CNN must not have been satisfied with that, because their introduction to the spies’ comments throws shade at Trump, but CNN is so good at it, that their shade is strong yet so subtle:

President Donald Trump's campaign and its alleged ties to Russia has been a big part of the political conversation this week.

There are new reports that Trump's associates may have coordinated with Russians before releasing information to damage Hillary Clinton's campaign last year. FBI director James Comey told the House Permanent Select Committee on Intelligence that the FBI is investigating alleged links between Russia and the Trump campaign and the extent of Russian involvement in the American election.

Russia’s interest in the United States is not new. During the Cold War, Russian agents were planted on US soil to spy on the country, and many of them were caught by the FBI. CNN spoke to KGB and FBI agents about the Russia hacking allegations and how espionage has changed over the years.

These comments are innocuous enough, except for two things. First: any kind of positive summary of the three spies’ comments. In other words, the sort of color commentary CNN always gives if the evidence or interviews lean they way they like. Second: the articles linked. Oh, boy, you must read them, if you want to understand the angle of this (somewhat) objective report. Here are the links to the two articles (the links are also included in the quote above, exactly as the CNN article linked them):

It’s imperative that you read them also if you merely desire to understand why CNN—and others—desire so badly for Trump to be caught colluding with the Russians. Ask the questions. Please! Ask the questions. What is CNN trying to accomplish? It is most definitely not mere accounting of the truth—whatever Jake Tapper says.