The Washington Post published an article on December 6th, 2016 [backup] entitled “’Pizzagate’ rumors falsely link death of sex-worker advocate to nonexistent Clinton probe”. It turns out the headline itself is false in regards to the actual facts. The article was published after citizen investigators working under the PizzaGate label alleged that Monica Petersen was killed during a probe into the Clinton Foundation in Haiti.
The article attempts to paint a picture that Monica Petersen, who recently died on November 13th, 2016 – supposedly from suicide by hanging – had nothing to do with human trafficking and had no interest in the Clinton Foundation. The Washington Post claimed that she was a pro-sex worker advocate and not a human trafficking activist, where they write…
“[…] in a tragic twist, an off-shoot of pizzagate has conspiracy theorists speculating that Monica Petersen, an activist for sex-worker rights, was killed because she was investigating links between the Clinton Foundation and sex trafficking in Haiti”
There’s no citation mentioned in the Washington Post piece to verify that Petersen was exclusively a sex-worker rights activist. However, according to Colorado senate committee documents, Petersen worked with addressing sex trafficking and human trafficking, as well as sex workers rights, and addressing victim’s rights under criminal law. In a Colorado state senate committee hearing regarding prostitution and human trafficking that Petersen attended on January 28th, 2015, she clearly states…
“My name is Monica Petersen and I am a research fellow at the Human Trafﬁcking Center (or HTC), and a graduate of the Josef Korbel School of International Studies at the University of Denver. I have Spent the past year and half researching gender, development, and human trafﬁcking under the guidance of Professor d‘Estree and the HTC.
“Among the most challenging goals of effective social justice is the reintegration of individuals or populations who have experienced, or are currently experiencing, forms of social disadvantage. Experiences of social disadvantage are wide-ranging, and are the social service needs for reintegration. Whether these reintegration needs concern those newly released from prison, refugees, or victim survivors of criminal activities, societies fair best when individual well being is supported, as the most progressive means to achieve collective welfare.”
The Washington Post article leaves out Petersen’s other endeavors and pigeonholes her work into only dealing with sex worker rights in order to create separation between Petersen and her work in human trafficking. In fact, they write…
“D’Estree said Petersen had gone to Haiti a number of times, but she was not there to research human trafficking and was not investigating the Clinton Foundation.”
This is an actual lie if we’re to believe what Monica Petersen’s mother said at her funeral, where she stated…
“During her time at Denver University, Monica became interested in human trafficking and the flawed research in that field.
“[…] Monica was teaching social studies at the union school and working to start a non-governmental organization. The NGO that she wanted to get started was an affordable guest house for volunteers in Haiti, which would have then helped her fund research in human trafficking, which we now know never came to pass.”
Nevertheless, the Washington Post also stated the following…
“Shortly after Petersen’s death, the blog post appeared in a Reddit discussion thread. This then resulted in a flurry of “news stories” falsely claiming that Petersen had written the blog post and was killed for investigating the Clintons.”
The Washington Post tries to misdirect readers into thinking that Petersen wrote a blog post and was killed for investigating the Clinton Foundation. In reality, the thread on The_Donald doesn’t explicitly say that she was killed for investigating the Clinton Foundation but that her death was “under suspicious circumstances” regarding her investigation into the Clinton Foundation for alleged human/sex trafficking, where they write…
“She died a few days ago under suspicious circumstances. Her friends on Facebook are looking for answers. Several close friends have made mentions on various FB posts that friends and family have no clear understanding of what happened to Monica except that she died on Sunday.
“Earlier this year a FB friend of Monica re-shared a post by Monica where Monica linked to a blog post critical of Hillary Clinton’s dealings in Haiti!! Screenshot below. Monica said “This is the theory my masters thesis puts forth”! SHE WAS ONTO SOMETHING, very likely between now and then she found out about #PIZZAGATE!”
The blog post that the Washington Post and The_Donald thread reference is the Haitian Blogger.
And here is where the Washington Post commits fraudulent information peddling. They write…
“The blog post Petersen shared months ago with Robinson, for instance, morphed into a blog post she allegedly wrote herself about the Clintons. (Chantal Laurent, who writes “The Haitian Blogger,” confirmed Petersen never contributed to the blog. “I never heard of her until I read the Reddit article,” she said.)”
This was never stated in the thread on The_Donald. In fact, they explicitly stated – as quoted above – that Monica Petersen linked Bella Robinson (her friend) to the Haitian Blogger, not that Petersen wrote it herself.
In fact, in The_Donald thread they literally link to the guest post actually written by Monica Petersen on the Human Trafficking Center website. The post is dated September 14th, 2014. The article is currently inaccessible and has been scrubbed from the Wayback Machine and archives are also unavailable.
However, there was an old Google cache of the article that was available before the website was locked down, and it shows that Petersen was discussing human trafficking, child trafficking and the displacement of children across the Mexican border. The article preceded her own adventures into Haiti to investigate human trafficking.
The Washington Post neglects to mention what Petersen discussed in her blog post.
What’s more is that this further contradicts what the Washington Post wrote about Petersen, who they claimed…
“Petersen was active in promoting sex-worker rights. Her last interview before her death was for a two-hour podcast, which aired in September, hosted by Chris Sowa titled “Fighting the Trafficking Narrative from Alaska to Rhode Island.”
“Before going on a 2015 trip to Haiti, Petersen asked for help locating pro-sex worker organizations. “I am a social anthropologist who wants do solid research on HT, rescuing people is not in my agenda (this is a stupid & imperialist concept),” she posted on a Facebook message board.”
Had they actually bothered to listen to the two hour interview they would have realized that at the 34 minute mark in the podcast, the reason Chris Sowa interviewed Monica Petersen from the University of Denver Human Trafficking Center was because Petersen was more concerned with the human trafficking aspect in the topic of criminalized trafficking, and not just the sex trafficking or sex workers’ rights. In fact, Petersen herself ridicules human trafficking organizations for only focusing on sex trafficking.
To quote Petersen from the two hour podcast that you can listen to from the Sex With Stranger Show website, she states…
“They only want to buy the sex part of this story. They don’t want to buy your story about this man who is fat and hairy and working in dirty, degrading, dangerous conditions of some other sector. That’s not sexy enough for us to buy.”
The context of that statement referred to the fact that at the time she was looking into the human trafficking aspect of the mines in Haiti.
The quote from the Washington Post from Petersen about not rescuing people is true, though. She wasn’t there to rescue people but to research, gather intel and do a 110-page expose on the matter. The Washington Post claims that the 110-page expose was about Siddarth Kara, writing…
“A faux investigator showed up at the University of Denver memorial service, asking questions and taking photographs. A comment made by d’Estree at the memorial service – that Petersen “decided to take on one of the demagogues in the field of human trafficking” – was interpreted as referring to Clinton when in fact he was talking about Siddarth Kara.”
Actually, this is patently false. According to Petersen’s former boss, Claude d’Estree, he stated at the memorial service…
“”(She) decided to take on one of the demagogues in the field of human trafficking.” […]
“Produced a 110-page analysis of human trafficking in Haiti – 2 years of research.” […] “We were looking for someone who was smart enough and maybe brave enough to publish her work” […] “I will continue to seek out and publish it for her” […] “We are in a state of shock. We may never know what exactly happened to her”
Petersen was targeting the mines operated out of the Caraol Complex by Tony Rodham, Hillary Clinton’s brother.
In a Facebook post dated January 4th, 2016, Petersen sent a message to Bella Robinson, her friend, to post up what she was doing in Haiti at the time. An excerpt reads…
“[…] the real significance of this scandal for me, I know you feel me Bella, is the link to contemporary slavery and trafficking. I can’t say to what extent, but there is human trafficking happening through the Clinton’s Caraol Complex. And mining has always been historically linked to trafficking, slavery, and labor exploitation. I’d like to go see for myself who’s laboring at Morne Bossa, but I would hypothesize that the Dominicans are doing the contractual oversight of the mining, while marginalized Haitians are being exploited for low or no cost labor in dangerous mining conditions.
“That’s two huge human trafficking scandals, an environmental degradation scandal, a social displacement scandal, a Presidential election scandal, a scandal with billions in unaccounted for earthquake aid… all leading directly back to the Clitons racist cronyism in Haiti.”
That’s specifically why she mentioned the “fat hairy” guys in “dangerous”, “degrading” and “dirty” conditions, given the fact that it tied into her work with the overall complexity involving men, women and kids involved with the Caraol Complex mining operation.
The Washington Post neglects to link to the Facebook post where Petersen claims she’s investigating the Clinton Foundation. In fact, The Washington Post cited that same thread from The_Donald sub-Reddit in their article but purposefully left out that image where she mentions the investigation into Clinton.
Instead, they weaseled around the topic to avoid any mention that Petersen made about the Clinton Foundation by only posting the following cropped images from The_Donald threat about Petersen’s work into human trafficking. in order to avoid the fact that Petersen mentioned specifically investigating the Clinton Foundation.
They also fail to cite another instance that had people on edge involving the Wikileaks e-mail from legislative assistant Brent Budowsky, who warned John Podesta via e-mail about getting Tony Rodham’s mining operation in Haiti under control, along with Clinton Foundation funds, writing on March 21st, 2015…
“It was not uplifting to learn in recent hours that problems with foreign donations to the Clinton Foundation continue, Hillary Clinton was still making paid speeches for hire this week, and Tony Rodham is hustling gold mining deals in Haiti.”
The e-mail goes on to warn about “red flags” and “warning signals” about the “self-created dangers” made by the Democratic Party. Ultimately, he acknowledged the self-fulfilling prophecy of the Democratic National Party costing themselves the Presidency through corruption and neglect.
The Washington Post tells people to stop sharing the news about Petersen’s death so that her family can have peace, writing…
“Please, quit sharing this nonsense on social media and let her family and friends have some peace.”
However, this literally contradicts what Monica Petersen’s mother mentioned at the funeral after Monica Petersen’s body was returned to the United States; Petersen’s mother still had questions about her death. The video was recorded by a citizen investigator from PizzaGate.
You can view the 12 minute video below.
For the hearing impaired, or if the video is unable to play, Mrs. Petersen states…
“On November 13th Monica died in Haiti. She seemingly took her own life… by hanging. But since that time, things have come to light that just don’t fit with Monica’s life… and her personality. When she went there ten weeks ago, she was happy, she was up, she was motivated, and so… we just don’t know. What happened? What changed so much? Her friends, her colleagues, just don’t see that as being her.
“Yes, she was upset by some of her personal living conditions in Haiti, but she dealt with similar conditions in other countries. She knew she could leave and no one would place blame on her. We don’t want to deny or blame as a family, but none of this seems to fit, and maybe that’s just the way it’s always going to be.
“We will likely always have more questions than answers about what transpired in that time.”
The Washington Post coerces the conversation to end, even though, according to Monica’s mother, they still have questions and very little answers.
This all looks especially egregious for the Washington Post coming off claims they made saying that there was no collusion between the media to promote the Clinton campaign during the elections, which turned out to be untrue when the Wikileaks e-mails surfaced showing clear and decisive collusion.
And this is also the second time we’ve covered the Washington Post fabricating information, which they did after purposefully misconstruing an interview with Eron Gjoni in order to publish actual libel about #GamerGate being a criminal harassment campaign led by Gjoni. And for the record, according to the FBI’s official report, there was no actionable evidence showing #GamerGate was an organized harassment campaign.
TL;DR: Monica Petersen never classified herself as a pro-sex worker. The Washington Post made that up out of thin air. Petersen was investigating the Clinton Foundation in Haiti. The Washington Post lied and said that she wasn’t. Petersen’s parents are looking for answers and asking questions. The Washington Post said they just wanted to be left in peace. Nearly every aspect of her work and life was purposefully misrepresented by the Washington Post.