As you know by now, Washington Post and Amazon owner Jeff Bezos has gone public with his fight against the National Enquirer and its publisher, David Pecker (and could Charles Dickens have come up with a more marvelous name?), after a lawyer for the Enquirer threatened to publish some highly personal photos of Bezos.
It all started in January, when the Enquirer exposed Bezos’ extramarital affair with Lauren Sanchez a former television anchor. Both Bezos and Sanchez are divorcing their current spouses, and it has been reported that the Bezos divorce could be the costliest ever.
Bezos hired an investigator to find out how the Enquirer got the materials. He believes the tabloid story was politically motivated — and it does seem likely that Donald Trump’s stubby little fingers are all over this tale of dueling peckers.
Pecker helped his buddy Trump in the 2016 election by purchasing and then deep-sixing stories about Trump’s own affairs with Stormy Daniels and Karen McDougal. The payments were facilitated through Trump fixer Michael Cohen. In return for cooperating in the Cohen investigation, the Enquirer’s parent company, American Media Inc., was granted immunity from prosecution if it commits no more criminal acts in the next three years.
But that agreement may be in jeopardy because Pecker overplayed his hand.
Apparently, he thought Bezos would be as good a blackmail target as Trump was, because a lawyer from AMI, we now know, sent Bezos e-mail informing him that there are more photos — including a dick pic — that would be published unless Bezos drops the investigation and prints an apology.
Bezos called their bluff and made the e-mail public, in all its salacious glory.
What’s Trump’s role in all this? Did he order Pecker to “investigate” Bezos? Trump has made no secret of his dislike for Bezos, who is reportedly the richest man in the world. Trump has complained that Amazon, which Bezos founded and owns, was getting breaks from the Postal Service and ought to be paying more in taxes. The Post has been a frequent target of Trump’s Twitter outbursts for daring to commit journalism on a daily basis.
Trump’s Twitter account has been silent on this latest development, but he lost no time in gloating when the Enquirer story about Bezos’ affair was published:
Of course, Trump’s first marriage ended when another tabloid, the New York Post, published a front-page story about his affair with Marla Maples, but 45 has no sense of irony.
Naturally he had to use a mocking nickname for Bezos.
But the telltale word is “hear.” He doesn’t say he read the news, but that he heard it. Did his pal Pecker phone him and let him know the dirty deed had been done? Did Trump put him up to it in the first place? Washington is a gossipy town, and it’s conceivable that the Post owner’s extracurricular activities reached 45, who then sicced his pit bull on the case.
In any case, all this could have been avoided if only Bezos had been more careful in the management of his own — er, David.