Wednesday, November 13, 2019

The Swamp Of Ukraine Corruption--And The Dems

The swamp of Ukraine corruption is far too vast a topic for me to take on--I prefer to stick to issues more directly related to areas in which I have more experience. However, several commenters, including Mike Sylwester and Cassander, have been exploring the topic. Here I'll simply offer some recent articles by knowledgeable students of what's been going on--how Ukrainian corruption has intersected with US politics.

We'll begin by linking to a blog at Moon of Alabama that Cassander pointed to: A Timeline Of Joe Biden's Intervention Against The Prosecutor General Of Ukraine.

The first article that I'll draw attention to is a relatively brief one by Patrick Lawrence: The Impeachment Pantomime. And here's a little teaser:

If everyone knows the whistleblower’s identity, why have the corporate media declined to name him? There can be but one answer to this question: If Ciaramella’s identity were publicized and his professional record exposed, the Ukrainegate narrative would instantly collapse into a second-rate vaudeville act — farce by any other name, although “hoax” might do, even if Trump has made the term his own.  
There is another half to this burlesque. While Schiff and his House colleagues chicken-scratch for something, anything that may justify a formal impeachment, a clear, documented record emerges of Joe Biden’s official interventions in Ukraine in behalf of Burisma Holdings, the gas company that named Hunter Biden to its board in March 2014 — a month, it is worth noting, after the U.S.–cultivated coup in Kiev. 
There is no thought of scrutinizing Biden’s activities by way of an official inquiry. In its way, this, too, reflects upon the pantomime of the impeachment probe. Are there sufficient grounds to open an investigation? Emphatically there are. Two reports published last week make this plain by any reasonable measure. 

The next two articles are much longer.

The first of the two is by the redoubtable, shoulda-got-a-Pulitzer, John Solomon--'The Real Ukraine Controversy': John Solomon Exposes How Rogue US Embassy Conducted Foreign Policy. It's an eye opener on how the US now does foreign policy, in collusion with people like George Soros, who profits mightily and then plows it back into US politics. That's how we've wound up with wacko DA's being elected. The first excerpt sets the tone:
The first time I ever heard the name of U.S. ambassador to Ukraine Marie Yovanovitch was in early March of this year. It did not come from a Ukrainian or an ally of President Trump. It came from a career diplomat I was interviewing on background on a different story. 
The diplomat, as I recall, suggested that Yovanovitch had just caused a commotion in Ukraine a few weeks before that country’s presidential election by calling for the firing of one of the prosecutors aligned with the incumbent president.
The diplomat related that a more senior State official, David Hale, was about  to travel to Ukraine and was prepping to be confronted about Yovanovitch’s comments. I remember the diplomat joking something to the effect of, “we always say that the Geneva Convention is optional for our Kiev staff. 
The Geneva Convention is the UN-backed pact enacted during the Cold War that governs the conduct of foreign diplomats in host countries and protects them against retribution. But it strictly mandates that foreign diplomats “have a duty not to interfere in the internal affairs of that State” that hosts them. You can read the convention’s rules here
The next excerpt introduces Soros, connecting his role in Ukraine to, of course, the 2016 election. I hope you see the possibilities in these connections, given the now known Ukraine connections to the Steele "dossier" and the State Department's role in propagating the Russia Hoax:
Up to that point, I had focused months of reporting on Ukraine on the U.S. government’s relationship with a Ukraine nonprofit called the AntiCorruption Action Centre, which was jointly funded by liberal megadonor George Soros’ charity and the State Department. I even sent a list of questions to that nonprofit all the way back in October 2018. It never answered. 
Given that Soros spent millions trying to elect Hillary Clinton and defeat Donald Trump in 2016, I thought it was a legitimate public policy question to ask whether a State Department that is supposed to be politically neutral should be in joint business with a partisan figure’s nonprofit entity. 
State officials confirmed that Soros’ foundation and the U.S. embassy jointly funded the AntiCorruption Action Centre, and that Soros’ vocal role in Ukraine as an anticorruption voice afforded him unique access to the State Department, including in 2016 to the top official on Ukraine policy, Assistant Secretary of State Victoria Nuland. (That access was confirmed in documents later released under FOIA to Citizens United.) 
Soros’ representatives separately confirmed to me that the Anti-Corruption Action Centre was the leading tip of the spear for a strategy Team Soros devised in 2014 to fight corruption in Ukraine and that might open the door for his possible business investment of $1 billion. You can read the Ukraine strategy document here and Soros’ plan to invest $1 billion in Ukraine here.

The third article is by David Stockman: The Ukrainian Influence Peddling Rings – A Microcosm of How Imperial Washington Rolls. Stockman's article is much to long and complex to summarize (and this is only Part One), however this excerpt should give a flavor for the rest of it:

... when the Ukrainian people elected a pro-Russian president in 2010 and all efforts to bribe and bully him westward failed, Washington instigated, funded and instantaneously recognized an illegal putsch on the streets of Kiev in February 2014. 
That blatant, unprovoked assault on a sovereign nation, in turn, set in motion a destructive civil war internally; a dangerous and utterly unnecessary politico-military confrontation with Russia on its own doorstep; and, now, a hysterical campaign by the House Dems and their Deep State allies to impeach a duly-elected American president for the sin of wading into the very cesspool of corruption that the Washington establishment itself foisted upon this hapless, $150 billion sliver of a failed state and crippled economy. 
The latest dispatch from the Wall Street Journal on the stench wafting westward from Kiev reveals more about the rotten foundation of UkraineGate than its authors probably understood. 
Burisma Holdings’ campaign to clean up its image in the West reached beyond the 2014 hiring of Hunter Biden, son of the then-U.S. vice president, to include other well-connected operatives in Washington, according to officials in both countries and government records. 
The Ukrainian company, owned by tycoon Mykola Zlochevsky, also hired a lobbyist with close ties to then-Secretary of State John Kerry, as well as a consulting group founded by top officials in the Clinton administration that specialized in preparing former Soviet-bloc countries to join NATO (Blue Star Strategies). 
Soon the efforts bore fruit. With the help of a New York-based lawyer, Mr. Zlochevsky’s U.S. consultants argued to Ukrainian prosecutors that criminal cases against the company should be closed because no laws had been broken.
Burisma later became a sponsor of a Washington think tank, the Atlantic Council, whose experts are often cited on energy and security policy in the former Soviet Union. 
Simple translation: Zlochevsky was an ally, officeholder (minister of ecology and natural resources) and inner-circle thief in the ousted government of Viktor Yanukovych. He therefore needed to powder the pig fast and thoroughly in order to hold onto his ill-gotten billions.

So he hired the best Washington influence peddlers that money could buy under the circumstances. First up was Hunter Biden, because his old man was running point on what amounted to the puppet government Washington had installed in Kiev, and Devon Archer, because he was a former bundler for former Senator (and then Secretary of State) John Kerry. 
But so as to leave no stone unturned, Zlochevsky also had Burisma hire another Washington influence peddler just one month after Biden the Younger joined the board in April 2014. Again, according to the WSJ, the additional lobbyist firepower came from one, 
David Leiter of Washington lobbying firm M.L. Strategies….. Mr. Leiter was John Kerry’s chief of staff when Mr. Kerry was a U.S. senator from Massachusetts. ... According to disclosure records, Mr. Leiter, who also had worked for the Energy Department, lobbied on behalf of Burisma on “promoting transparency and good corporate governances” at both chambers of Congress, the State Department, the Treasury Department, the Energy Department, and US AID.


  1. Graft and corruption.

    If I could honestly just throw ot all at Obama and part of the corrupt politics and worldview he had, I would. However, Republicans like like McCain, a corrupt politician already having issues prior, Ukranian was prime for Democrat and Republican alike. This is also known as the UniParty.

    This corruption goes beyond Ukraine, though, Syria for example.

  2. Biden corruption involving China makes Ukraine look like a sideshow. And there's so much more.

  3. Serious comment from me this time. One of the Republicans should say the name 'Eric Ciaramella' and see if Pencil Neck's eyes bulge more than normal. Or maybe he would be stupid enough to say "You said his name! You said his name!" Because Shifty says he doesn't know the whistleblower's name. If he reacts, then he is the liar that we know that he is.

    Also, how can Pencil Neck say that no one can say his name, if he himself doesn't know the man's name. So if someone says 'Eric Ciaramalla', Pencil Neck would presumably be serene and happy because he doesn't know the name.

  4. Instead why not mention the name constantly but mispronounce it. Something like "Erik C I A Ra Ma La, the dog-whistle blower". Let Schifty correct you.


  5. Mark -- I watched Oliver Stone's latest Ukraine documentary tonight. I had not been familiar with it. Regardless of what one might think of Oliver Stone's political leanings, there are numerous additional facts which further fill in the mosaic. The mosaic of extreme corruption by the Obama Administration. Its called Revealing Ukraine and its available on Prime Video. Highly recommended.

    1. Thanks. There's a virtual avalanche of Ukraine info coming out.

  6. I just watched supposedly objective commentator Ray Suarez (on Kurtz' show) say that Republicans' insistence that Clinton collusion with Ukraine in 2016 is a partisan nothingburger worthy of zero attention.

    I'm inclined to agree with him in the sense that I do not believe anything the Ukrainians did in 2016 moved the needle.

    However, the more I read about, listen to (and watch) what was going on in Ukraine 2013-2016 (and US involvement in it) the more convinced I am that there was a mountain of colossal wrongdoing by the Obamas and the Russia Hoax, Weissmann Report and Schiff Show are all attempts to divert from and cover up what was really going on.

    I go back to Brennan's actions. The only explanation for his extreme behavior is coverup. To prevent Trump from exposing them.

    Or so I surmise.