Christian Cantor is the Israeli diplomat who was named by George Papadapoulos as the man who helped put him in touch with Alexander Downer in London. Downer, who once served as Australia’s foreign minister, met with Papadopoulos at a wine bar. After that meeting, Downer told Australian authorities that Papadopoulos was using Russian sources to obtain dirt on the Clinton campaign.
Papadopoulos has denied that he told Downer anything about Clinton emails. But he did confirm, in a tweet on Saturday, that he was introduced to Downer by Christian Cantor and Cantor’s girlfriend, an Australian intelligence officer named Erika Thompson.
Here’s what you need to know about Christian Cantor:
1. Cantor is a Political Counselor at the Embassy of Israel in London
Christian Cantor began working at the Israeli embassy in London in 2012; his title is political counselor.
Prior to that, he served in Israel’s ministry of foreign affairs as advisor to the Director General. He has an MA in conflict resolution from Hebrew University in Jerusalem, and a BA in philosophy, also from Hebrew University.
2. Papadpoulos Described Cantor as Someone Who ‘Hated’ Trump
It’s not clear why Cantor, who spent his entire adult career working for the Israeli government, would “hate” Donald Trump. Trump is a close ally of Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu. But Papadopoulos described Cantor as “an Israeli diplomat who hated Trump.”
Papapdopoulos says Cantor met him in London and introduced him to his girlfriend, Erika Thompson. Papapdopoulos seems to believe that the whole business was a set-up; he said that Thompson “just happened to be an Australian intel officer and assistant to Downer.” Papadopoulos also used quotation marks around the word “girlfriend” — as if he did not believe that Erika Thompson and Christian Cantor were truly a couple.
3. Cantor’s Girlfriend, Erika Thompson, Is a Counselor For Australia’s London Embassy
Papadopoulos said that Cantor introduced him to his girlfriend, Erika Thompson, who “just happened” to work for the Australian government. In fact, Erika Thompson is a counselor at Australia’s embassy in London.
Back in 2016, Alexander Downer was Australia’s High Commissioner to the United Kingdom. Thompson was a counselor working for him at the embassy in London.
Thompson introduced Papadopoulos to Downer, who met with him at the Kensington Wine Room, a tony wine bar in London. Downer told The Australian that during their meeting, Papadopoulos bragged to him about being a part of the Trump campaign and about gathering information on Clinton from Russian sources.
Papadopoulos was up late on Saturday night, tweeting about his meeting with Downer and all the people involved in it. He mentioned Christian Cantor, and he talked about Erika Thompson. He also griped that Downer recorded their conversation without his permission.
This isn’t a fresh complaint; it’s something that Papadopoulos has brought up repeatedly. But he touched on it again on Saturday night, before getting into the way he met Thompson, Cantor, and Downer.
4. Cantor is a Bit of a Foodie
Cantor has lived in London since 2012, and his Facebook page is full of pictures of the best food London has to offer.
There are shots of cakes and cookies, soups and meatballs. Cantor liked a deli called Monty’s, which offers salt beef, chopped liver, and other traditional Jewish deli foods.
There’s also a post in homage to Anthony Bourdain, the well-traveled chef and food critic who committed suicide earlier this year.
5. Cantor Said Brexit Would Probably Help Bring About Peace in Syria
Cantor gave a long talk in 2016 about the likely impact of Brexit (the UK’s plan to separate from the European Union). He said that probably, the UK would develop closer relations to Gulf states. But he also said that the UK would probably seek out a more “conciliatory,” peaceful approach in Syria.
Cantor was, on the whole, positive about the UK’s plan to exit the EU.