Carter Page, a former foreign-policy adviser to President Trump, failed to get his Ph.D. not once but twice from the University of London. While it’s relatively common for a student’s thesis to not pass muster once, it’s far less expected the second time around, given the process’s extensive feedback. According to The Guardian, Page’s response was to accuse his examiners of “anti-Russian bias.” In fact, his assessors found his work “verbose” and “vague.” One of his examiners, Prof. Gregory Andrusz, who specialized in Russian studies, said he has never failed a Ph.D. thesis twice before. He said Page “hinted at having contacts in high places in Russia who were his informants,” but his thesis was still a mess. “Page seemed to think that if he talked enough, people would think he was well-informed. In fact it was the reverse,” he told The Guardian. Page finally received his doctorate in 2011, but emails show that Page was so upset at his failures that he compared his academic suffering to the plight of a Russian oligarch who was sent by Vladimir Putin to a Siberian prison. He once wrote to his examiners: “Your actions to date have been far more destructive than anything I have personally experienced in my 39 years on this planet.” The suffering of Mikhail Khodorkovsky, he noted, symbolizes “the closest analogy in recent history to my trials.” Page is under investigation for his alleged connections with Russian officials and quit Trump’s campaign in September 2016.
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