Amazon CEO Jeff Bezos published an bomb letter Thursday accusing National Enquirer primogenitor association American Media Inc. of coercion and blackmail.
In the letter, Bezos accuses the Enquirer and AMI of a tract to tell risque images of Bezos and adore seductiveness Lauren Sanchez in sell for statements observant their review into the duo’s attribute was not politically motivated.
“Rather than yield to coercion and blackmail, I’ve decided to tell accurately what they sent me, notwithstanding the personal cost and annoyance they threaten,” wrote Bezos in a blog post published on Medium.
Here what you need to know about the conflict between Bezos and the Enquirer:
It started with an purported affair
After the story was published, Bezos — whose net value is estimated by Forbes at $160 billion — pronounced he defended questioner Gavin de Becker to establish how the Enquirer got a reason of his texts. “I’ve famous Mr. de Becker for twenty years, his imagination in this locus is excellent, and he’s one of the smartest and most capable leaders we know,” pronounced Bezos in his letter.
In his post on Medium, Bezos shares an email sell with Martin Singer and AMI arch calm officer Dylan Howard dated Feb 5. Singer is a warn defended by Bezos’ questioner de Becker. Howard, according to the exchange, pronounced the Enquirer had performed risque images of both Bezos and Sanchez.
According to Bezos, a successive email sent Feb 6 from Jon Fine, emissary ubiquitous warn at AMI, pronounced the Enquirer would not tell the additional texts or photos if Bezos made a matter he had no believe suggesting AMI’s coverage of the attribute was politically motivated.
“These communications concrete AMI’s long-earned repute for weaponizing journalistic privileges, stealing behind critical protections, and ignoring the beliefs and purpose of loyal journalism,” wrote Bezos.
How has AMI responded?
In a statement expelled Friday, the association pronounced it would “promptly and thoroughly” examine the claims and take movement as necessary.
“American Media believes fervently that it acted rightly in the stating of the story of Mr. Bezos,” pronounced the statement. “Further, at the time of the new allegations made by Mr. Bezos, it was in good faith negotiations to solve all matters with him.”
Why the claims of domestic motivations matter
In July, an audio recording performed by CNN reportedly showed President Donald Trump and his former lawyer, Michael Cohen, deliberating remuneration to a former Playboy model who claims to have had an eventuality with Trump. Cohen refers to a “David” believed to be David Pecker, the CEO of AMI. The association had paid ex-Playboy indication Karen McDougal $150,000 for her story about her purported eventuality with Trump, but never published it. Both sides settled a lawsuit over the arrangement in April.
Cohen has been cursed to 3 years in jail and had designed to attest before Congress this week as part of special prosecutor Robert Mueller’s review into probable Russian division in the 2016 election. Cohen postponed his testimony citing “threats” from the president.
In December, federal prosecutors contend AMI admitted profitable off an unnamed former Playboy indication to conceal announcement of her claims of an eventuality they believed would bluster Trump’s 2016 presidential campaign. The sum were summarized as part of a nonprosecution agreement between the Justice Department and AMI. The filing by prosecutors pronounced Pecker, a longtime crony of Trump, “offered to assistance understanding with disastrous stories” that could harm Trump’s run for the White House.
Trump and Bezos have history
In his letter, Bezos records his tenure of The Washington Post as a “complexifier” potentially positioning him as an rivalry to absolute people including Trump, who has regularly referred to the paper as the “Amazon Washington Post.”
While vocalization to Fox horde Sean Hannity in an talk in May 2016, Trump pronounced Bezos was using his squeeze of The Post to strengthen Amazon’s monopoly, claiming he has “a outrageous anti-trust problem.”
More recently, Trump mocked Bezos as “Jeff Bozo” in a twitter last month.
So contemptible to hear the news about Jeff Bozo being taken down by a aspirant whose reporting, we understand, is distant more accurate than the stating in his lobbyist newspaper, the Amazon Washington Post. Hopefully the paper will shortly be placed in better more obliged hands!
— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) January 14, 2019
In Oct 2016, during an eventuality hosted by repository Vanity Fair, Bezos criticized Trump’s campaign, observant it “erodes our democracy.” He even joked about promulgation Trump into space through his aerospace association Blue Origin. “I have a rocket company, so the capability is there.” Bezos after altered his tune, charity his congratulations and “my most open mind” after Trump won the election.
What’s the Saudi connection?
Bezos references the Post’s coverage of Jamal Khashoggi, the publisher killed inside a Saudi Arabian consulate in Turkey last year. Although Trump has cursed the murder, he stays tighten to the Saudi family and has questioned claims from comprehension implicating the Saudis in his murder. On Thursday, a bipartisan organisation of lawmakers pushed legislation to levy sanctions on Saudi Arabia to reason them accountable for Khashoggi’s death.
According to Bezos, a deputy from AMI pronounced Pecker was “apoplectic” about the review into the Enquirer story. “For reasons still to be better understood, the Saudi angle seems to strike a quite supportive nerve,” pronounced Bezos.
In Mar 2018, The New York Times published a story claiming Pecker incited to Trump to assistance concrete a attribute with the Saudis to grow his businesses. AMI also published a 97-page repository that same month in support of Saudi Arabia, which the association allegedly common with Saudi officials about 3 weeks before publication, The Associated Press reports.
Follow Brett Molina on Twitter: @brettmolina23.
This essay creatively seemed on USA TODAY: What we know about Bezos’ minute accusing National Enquirer primogenitor of blackmail