“By mid-July, it was becoming clear to me that the meeting President Zelensky wanted was conditioned on the investigations of Burisma, and alleged Ukrainian interference and the 2016 U.S. elections. It was also clear that this condition was driven by the irregular policy channel I had come to understand was guided by Mr. Giuliani.”

William Taylor
Acting U.S. Ambassador to Ukraine
(11/13/19 Testimony)


In mid-August, it became clear to me that Giuliani’s efforts to gin up politically-motivated investigations were now infecting US engagement with Ukraine, leveraging President Zelensky’s desire for a White House meeting.

George Kent
Deputy Assistant U.S. Secretary of State for Eastern Europe and the Caucuses
(11/13/19 Testimony)


“I found the July 25th phone call to be unusual, because in contrast to other presidential calls I had observed, it involved discussion of what appeared to be a domestic political matter.”

Jennifer Williams
Official at the State Department detailed to Vice President Mike Pence
(11/19/19 Testimony)


Following this meeting, there was a short debriefing during which Ambassador Sondland emphasized the importance of Ukraine delivering the investigations into the 2016 elections, the Bidens and Burisma. I stated to Ambassador Sondland that this was inappropriate and it had nothing to do with national security. Dr. Hill also asserted his comments weren’t proper.”

Lt. Col. Alexander Vindman
National Security Counsel Ukraine Expert, Director for European Affairs 
(11/19/19 Testimony)


Adam Schiff:  “Both of you recall President Zelensky in that conversation raising the issue or mentioning Burisma, do you not?”

Jennifer Williams:  “That’s correct.”

Alexander Vindman: “Correct.”

Adam Schiff:  “And yet the word Burisma appears nowhere in the call record that’s been released to the public. Is that right?”

Jennifer Williams:  “That’s right.”

Alexander Vindman:  “Correct.”

(11/19/19 Testimony)


“My understanding is that this was viewed as a sensitive transcript”

Lt. Col. Alexander Vindman
National Security Counsel Ukraine Expert, Director for European Affairs 
(11/19/19 Testimony)


“The problem was that despite the unanimous positive assessment and recommendations of those of us who were part of the US presidential delegation that attended the inauguration of President Zelensky, President Trump was receiving a different negative narrative about Ukraine and President Zelensky. That narrative was fueled by accusations from Ukraine’s then Prosecutor General [Yuriy Lutsenko] and conveyed to the President by former Mayor Rudy Giuliani.”

Kurt Volker
Former US Special Envoy to Ukraine
(11/19/19 Testimony)


“Ambassador Sondland and I had a further conversation with Mr. Giuliani, who said in his view, in order to be convincing that this government represented real change in Ukraine, the statement [from Zelensky about conducting investigations] should include specific reference to Burisma and 2016.”

Kurt Volker
Former US Special Envoy to Ukraine
(11/19/19 Testimony)


“Was there a ‘quid pro quo?’ As I testified previously, with regard to the requested White House call and White House meeting, the answer is yes.”

Gordon Sondland
U.S. Ambassador to the European Union
(11/20/19 Testimony)


“The suggestion that we were engaged in some irregular or rogue diplomacy is absolutely false. Everyone was in the loop. It was no secret.”

Gordon Sondland
U.S. Ambassador to the European Union
(11/20/19 Testimony)


“We followed the president’s orders.”

Gordon Sondland
U.S. Ambassador to the European Union
(11/20/19 Testimony)


“He [Trump] said, ‘I want nothing. I want no quid pro quo. I just want Zelensky to do the right thing, to do what he ran on.’”

Gordon Sondland
U.S. Ambassador to the European Union
(11/20/19 Testimony)

* Trump said this to Sondland on September 7, 2019, after questions about withholding Ukraine aid in exchange for political investigations had already become public.


“Based on questions and statements I have heard, some of you on this committee appear to believe that Russia and its security services did not conduct a campaign against our country — and that perhaps, somehow, for some reason, Ukraine did. This is a fictional narrative that has been perpetrated and propagated by the Russian security services themselves.”

Fiona Hill
Former White House Adviser, Former Senior Director for European and Russian Affairs
(11/21/19 Testimony)


“He [Sondland] was being involved in a domestic political errand. And we were being involved in national security foreign policy. And those two things had just diverged.”

Fiona Hill
Former White House Adviser, Former Senior Director for European and Russian Affairs
(11/21/19 Testimony)


Fiona Hill:   “It was very apparent to me that that was what Rudy Giuliani intended, yes – intended to convey that Burisma was linked to the Bidens, and he said this publicly repeatedly”

Attorney Goldman:  “And Mr. Holmes, you also understood that ‘Burisma’ was code for ‘Bidens’?”

David Holmes:   “Yes.”

(11/21/19 Testimony)


“The specific instruction [from John Bolton] was that I had to go to the lawyers, to John Eisenberg, our senior counsel for the National Security Council, to basically say, ‘You tell Eisenberg Ambassador Bolton told me that I am not part of this, whatever drug deal that Mulvaney and Sondland are cooking up.’”

Fiona Hill
Former White House Adviser, Former Senior Director for European and Russian Affairs
(11/21/19 Testimony)


“I asked Ambassador Sondland if it was true that the President did not ‘give a s–t about Ukraine.’ Ambassador Sondland agreed that the President did not ‘give a s–t about Ukraine.’ I asked why not, and Ambassador Sondland stated that the President only cares about ‘big stuff.’ I noted that there was ‘big stuff’ going on in Ukraine, like a war with Russia, and Ambassador Sondland replied that he meant ‘big stuff’ that benefits the President, like the ‘Biden investigation’ that Mr. Giuliani was pushing.”

David Holmes
Counselor for Political Affairs at the US Embassy in Ukraine
(11/21/19 Testimony)


“My clear impression was that the security assistance hold was likely intended by the president either as an expression of dissatisfaction with the Ukrainians who had not yet agreed to the Burisma/Biden investigation or as an effort to increase the pressure on them to do so.”

David Holmes
Counselor for Political Affairs at the US Embassy in Ukraine
(11/21/19 Testimony)


“The President’s voice was loud and recognizable, and Ambassador Sondland held the phone away from his ear for a period of time, presumably because of the loud volume. I heard Ambassador Sondland greet the President and explained he was calling from Kiev. I heard President Trump then clarify that Ambassador Sondland was in Ukraine. Ambassador Sondland replied, yes, he was in Ukraine and went on to state that President Zelensky ‘loves your ass.’ I then heard President Trump ask, ‘So he’s going to do the investigation?’
“Ambassador Sondland replied that, ‘He’s going to do it,’ adding that ‘President Zelensky will do anything you ask him to do.’ Even though I did not take notes of these statements, I have a clear recollection that these statements were made.”

David Holmes
Counselor for Political Affairs at the US Embassy in Ukraine
(11/21/19 Testimony)


“I come back, I refer to the call, and everyone is nodding: of course that’s what’s going on. Of course the President is pressing for a Biden investigation before he’ll do these things the Ukrainians want. There is nodding agreement. So, did I go through every single word in the call? No, because everyone by that point agreed. It was obvious what the President was pressing for.”

David Holmes
Counselor for Political Affairs at the US Embassy in Ukraine
(11/21/19 Testimony)


For more info, visit Trump-Ukraine Central


– rob rünt

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